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What is a freelance model contract?

As a freelance model, you have probably heard about the importance of signing a contract before doing the work. If you have plans of seeking regular work as a model, you should consider having a freelance model contract template in place. A draft contract is essentially the template of a contract that you can use and make changes to. Once you and your client agree on the terms laid down in the draft contract, it becomes the final contract, and you can sign it. 

A freelance model contract template gives you a starting point for negotiating terms with your client. You should place the ideal terms that you want to work under in a draft contract, and then make changes to it according to the client’s needs. It should have all the necessary standard clauses that are needed to make it effective along with any other clauses you might want to include. 

Since the contracts that you will be signing with various clients will be largely similar, it is always useful to have a freelance model contract template in place. This makes it easier for you when new clients approach you or when they need to repeat the business.

Freelance Model Contract Template
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What should be included in a freelance model contract template?

Take a look at some of the reasons that make signing a contract with your client essential.

1. The freelance model contract template makes it easier for you to receive payment 

In an ideal world, every client would pay on time and give you a security deposit before you start any work. However, clients are notorious for delaying payments for months or not paying at all. A client may stop responding to your calls or may not pay you according to the previously agreed-upon terms. They may base their non-payment on a variety of excuses such as the work not meeting the expectations. 

This is a common problem faced by freelancers, and the best solution to it is to have everything down in writing in a legally binding document. So, when the time comes for payment, the client will be much more amenable to agree to the terms of the contract. There is a much higher chance of you getting paid and receiving your payment on time if there is a contract in place. 

2. The freelance model contract template lays down the scope of your work 

Whenever you are working with a new client, or even when doing something new for an old client, there is a lot of room for confusion. As a model, you should clarify the requirements of your client beforehand. The entire scope of the work you agree to do for them should be laid down in the contract. 

It is best to avoid a situation in which your expectations of the work that is required is different from those of the client. Once you have a contract in place that specifically lays down everything you need to do, it can be relied upon, and you can work accordingly without having any doubts.

Freelance Model Contract Template Sample
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How to create a freelance model contract?

A contract can be your best friend in a time of need. If communications break down between you and your client, it is the contract that will be highly useful. Since a contract is made assuming the worst-case scenario, the clauses of your contract will specify what needs to be done in such scenarios. 

Your freelance model contract template will specify what kind of work you need to do, how much you will get paid, when the payment is due, what the client’s responsibilities are, what happens if the work could not be performed, etc. Now, if you and your client have a disagreement, you can simply refer to the wordings of the contract.

Essential clauses to include in your freelance model contract template 

Every contract will include standard clauses that are necessary to make the contract legally binding and effective. In addition to the standard clauses, you should ensure that your freelance model contract template has clauses that dictate the terms of payment, the scope of work, what happens on termination and the duration of the contract. 

As a model, your contract should specify how the earnings are going to be divided between you and the agency. It should also specify how the work can be used and cannot be used. For example, does the contract give your agency the right to publish your work globally? 

Having a freelance model contract template that contains these essential clauses will take a considerable burden off your mind and allow you to concentrate on your work.

Use this template

The simplest way to create a legally sound contract. Check out an example below

Freelance Model Contract Template

This Contract is between Sample Client (the "Client") and John Doe (the "Model").

The Contract is dated [the date both parties sign].


1.1 Project. The Client is hiring the Model to do the following: The Model will assist the Client with modeling services.

1.2 Schedule. The Model will begin work on August 21, 2020 and the work is ongoing. This Contract can be ended by either Client or Model at any time, pursuant to the terms of Section 6, Term and Termination.

1.3 Payment. The Client will pay the Model a rate of $95.00 (USD) per hour. Of this, the Client will pay the Model $500.00 (USD) before work begins.

1.4 Expenses. The Client will reimburse the Model's expenses. Expenses do not need to be pre-approved by the Client.

1.5 Invoices. The Model will invoice the Client weekly. The Client agrees to pay the amount owed within 15 days of receiving the invoice. Payment after that date will incur a late fee of 5.0% per month on the outstanding amount.

1.6 Support. The Model will not provide support for any deliverable once the Client accepts it, unless otherwise agreed in writing.


2.1 Client Owns All Work Product. As part of this job, the Model is creating “work product” for the Client. To avoid confusion, work product is the finished product, as well as drafts, notes, materials, mockups, hardware, designs, inventions, patents, code, and anything else that the Model works on—that is, conceives, creates, designs, develops, invents, works on, or reduces to practice—as part of this project, whether before the date of this Contract or after. The Model hereby gives the Client this work product once the Client pays for it in full. This means the Model is giving the Client all of its rights, titles, and interests in and to the work product (including intellectual property rights), and the Client will be the sole owner of it. The Client can use the work product however it wants or it can decide not to use the work product at all. The Client, for example, can modify, destroy, or sell it, as it sees fit.

2.2 Model's Use Of Work Product. Once the Model gives the work product to the Client, the Model does not have any rights to it, except those that the Client explicitly gives the Model here. The Client gives the Model permission to use the work product as part of the Model's portfolio and websites, in galleries, and in other media, so long as it is to showcase the Model's work and not for any other purpose. The Model is not allowed to sell or otherwise use the work product to make money or for any other commercial use. The Client is not allowed to take back this license, even after the Contract ends.

2.3 Model's Help Securing Ownership. In the future, the Client may need the Model's help to show that the Client owns the work product or to complete the transfer. The Model agrees to help with that. For example, the Model may have to sign a patent application. The Client will pay any required expenses for this. If the Client can’t find the Model, the Model agrees that the Client can act on the Model's behalf to accomplish the same thing. The following language gives the Client that right: if the Client can’t find the Model after spending reasonable effort trying to do so, the Model hereby irrevocably designates and appoints the Client as the Model's agent and attorney-in-fact, which appointment is coupled with an interest, to act for the Model and on the Model's behalf to execute, verify, and file the required documents and to take any other legal action to accomplish the purposes of paragraph 2.1 (Client Owns All Work Product).

2.4 Model's IP That Is Not Work Product. During the course of this project, the Model might use intellectual property that the Model owns or has licensed from a third party, but that does not qualify as “work product.” This is called “background IP.” Possible examples of background IP are pre-existing code, type fonts, properly-licensed stock photos, and web application tools. The Model is not giving the Client this background IP. But, as part of the Contract, the Model is giving the Client a right to use and license (with the right to sublicense) the background IP to develop, market, sell, and support the Client’s products and services. The Client may use this background IP worldwide and free of charge, but it cannot transfer its rights to the background IP (except as allowed in Section 11.1 (Assignment)). The Client cannot sell or license the background IP separately from its products or services. The Model cannot take back this grant, and this grant does not end when the Contract is over.

2.5 Model's Right To Use Client IP. The Model may need to use the Client’s intellectual property to do its job. For example, if the Client is hiring the Model to build a website, the Model may have to use the Client’s logo. The Client agrees to let the Model use the Client’s intellectual property and other intellectual property that the Client controls to the extent reasonably necessary to do the Model's job. Beyond that, the Client is not giving the Model any intellectual property rights, unless specifically stated otherwise in this Contract.

3. COMPETITIVE ENGAGEMENTS. The Model won’t work for a competitor of the Client until this Contract ends. To avoid confusion, a competitor is any third party that develops, manufactures, promotes, sells, licenses, distributes, or provides products or services that are substantially similar to the Client’s products or services. A competitor is also a third party that plans to do any of those things. The one exception to this restriction is if the Model asks for permission beforehand and the Client agrees to it in writing. If the Model uses employees or subcontractors, the Model must make sure they follow the obligations in this paragraph, as well.

4. NON-SOLICITATION. Until this Contract ends, the Model won’t: (a) encourage Client employees or service providers to stop working for the Client; (b) encourage Client customers or clients to stop doing business with the Client; or (c) hire anyone who worked for the Client over the 12-month period before the Contract ended. The one exception is if the Model puts out a general ad and someone who happened to work for the Client responds. In that case, the Model may hire that candidate. The Model promises that it won’t do anything in this paragraph on behalf of itself or a third party.


5.1 Overview. This section contains important promises between the parties.

5.2 Authority To Sign. Each party promises to the other party that it has the authority to enter into this Contract and to perform all of its obligations under this Contract.

5.3 Model Has Right To Give Client Work Product. The Model promises that it owns the work product, that the Model is able to give the work product to the Client, and that no other party will claim that it owns the work product. If the Model uses employees or subcontractors, the Model also promises that these employees and subcontractors have signed contracts with the Model giving the Model any rights that the employees or subcontractors have related to the Model's background IP and work product.

5.4 Model Will Comply With Laws. The Model promises that the manner it does this job, its work product, and any background IP it uses comply with applicable U.S. and foreign laws and regulations.

5.5 Work Product Does Not Infringe. The Model promises that its work product does not and will not infringe on someone else’s intellectual property rights, that the Model has the right to let the Client use the background IP, and that this Contract does not and will not violate any contract that the Model has entered into or will enter into with someone else.

5.6 Client Will Review Work. The Client promises to review the work product, to be reasonably available to the Model if the Model has questions regarding this project, and to provide timely feedback and decisions.

5.7 Client-Supplied Material Does Not Infringe. If the Client provides the Model with material to incorporate into the work product, the Client promises that this material does not infringe on someone else’s intellectual property rights.

6. TERM AND TERMINATION. This Contract is ongoing, until ended by the Client or the Model. Either party may end this Contract for any reason by sending an email or letter to the other party, informing the recipient that the sender is ending the Contract and that the Contract will end in 7 days. The Contract officially ends once that time has passed. The party that is ending the Contract must provide notice by taking the steps explained in Section 11.4. The Model must immediately stop working as soon as it receives this notice, unless the notice says otherwise. The Client will pay the Model for the work done up until when the Contract ends and will reimburse the Model for any agreed-upon, non-cancellable expenses. The following sections don’t end even after the Contract ends: 2 (Ownership and Licenses); 3 (Competitive Engagements); 4 (Non-Solicitation); 5 (Representations); 8 (Confidential Information); 9 (Limitation of Liability); 10 (Indemnity); and 11 (General).

7. INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR. The Client is hiring the Model as an independent contractor. The following statements accurately reflect their relationship:

- The Model will use its own equipment, tools, and material to do the work.- The Client will not control how the job is performed on a day-to-day basis. Rather, the Model is responsible for determining when, where, and how it will carry out the work.- The Client will not provide the Model with any training.- The Client and the Model do not have a partnership or employer-employee relationship.- The Model cannot enter into contracts, make promises, or act on behalf of the Client.- The Model is not entitled to the Client’s benefits (e.g., group insurance, retirement benefits, retirement plans, vacation days).- The Model is responsible for its own taxes.- The Client will not withhold social security and Medicare taxes or make payments for disability insurance, unemployment insurance, or workers compensation for the Model or any of the Model's employees or subcontractors.


8.1 Overview. This Contract imposes special restrictions on how the Client and the Model must handle confidential information. These obligations are explained in this section.

8.2 The Client’s Confidential Information. While working for the Client, the Model may come across, or be given, Client information that is confidential. This is information like customer lists, business strategies, research & development notes, statistics about a website, and other information that is private. The Model promises to treat this information as if it is the Model's own confidential information. The Model may use this information to do its job under this Contract, but not for anything else. For example, if the Client lets the Model use a customer list to send out a newsletter, the Model cannot use those email addresses for any other purpose. The one exception to this is if the Client gives the Model written permission to use the information for another purpose, the Model may use the information for that purpose, as well. When this Contract ends, the Model must give back or destroy all confidential information, and confirm that it has done so. The Model promises that it will not share confidential information with a third party, unless the Client gives the Model written permission first. The Model must continue to follow these obligations, even after the Contract ends. The Model's responsibilities only stop if the Model can show any of the following: (i) that the information was already public when the Model came across it; (ii) the information became public after the Model came across it, but not because of anything the Model did or didn’t do; (iii) the Model already knew the information when the Model came across it and the Model didn’t have any obligation to keep it secret; (iv) a third party provided the Model with the information without requiring that the Model keep it a secret; or (v) the Model created the information on its own, without using anything belonging to the Client.

8.3 Third-Party Confidential Information. It’s possible the Client and the Model each have access to confidential information that belongs to third parties. The Client and the Model each promise that it will not share with the other party confidential information that belongs to third parties, unless it is allowed to do so. If the Client or the Model is allowed to share confidential information with the other party and does so, the sharing party promises to tell the other party in writing of any special restrictions regarding that information.

9. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY. Neither party is liable for breach-of-contract damages that the breaching party could not reasonably have foreseen when it entered this Contract.


10.1 Overview. This section transfers certain risks between the parties if a third party sues or goes after the Client or the Model or both. For example, if the Client gets sued for something that the Model did, then the Model may promise to come to the Client’s defense or to reimburse the Client for any losses.

10.2 Client Indemnity. In this Contract, the Model agrees to indemnify the Client (and its affiliates and its and their directors, officers, employees, and agents) from and against all liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including reasonable attorneys’ fees) related to a third-party claim or proceeding arising out of: (i) the work the Model has done under this Contract; (ii) a breach by the Model of its obligations under this Contract; or (iii) a breach by the Model of the promises it is making in Section 5 (Representations).

10.3 Model Indemnity. In this Contract, the Client agrees to indemnify the Model (and its affiliates and its and their directors, officers, employees, and agents) from and against liabilities, losses, damages, and expenses (including reasonable attorneys’ fees) related to a third-party claim or proceeding arising out of a breach by the Client of its obligations under this Contract.


11.1 Assignment. This Contract applies only to the Client and the Model. The Model cannot assign its rights or delegate its obligations under this Contract to a third-party (other than by will or intestate), without first receiving the Client’s written permission. In contrast, the Client may assign its rights and delegate its obligations under this Contract without the Model's permission. This is necessary in case, for example, another Client buys out the Client or if the Client decides to sell the work product that results from this Contract.

11.2 Arbitration. As the exclusive means of initiating adversarial proceedings to resolve any dispute arising under this Contract, a party may demand that the dispute be resolved by arbitration administered by the American Arbitration Association in accordance with its commercial arbitration rules.

11.3 Modification; Waiver. To change anything in this Contract, the Client and the Model must agree to that change in writing and sign a document showing their contract. Neither party can waive its rights under this Contract or release the other party from its obligations under this Contract, unless the waiving party acknowledges it is doing so in writing and signs a document that says so.

11.4 Notices.

(a) Over the course of this Contract, one party may need to send a notice to the other party. For the notice to be valid, it must be in writing and delivered in one of the following ways: personal delivery, email, or certified or registered mail (postage prepaid, return receipt requested). The notice must be delivered to the party’s address listed at the end of this Contract or to another address that the party has provided in writing as an appropriate address to receive notice.

(b) The timing of when a notice is received can be very important. To avoid confusion, a valid notice is considered received as follows: (i) if delivered personally, it is considered received immediately; (ii) if delivered by email, it is considered received upon acknowledgement of receipt; (iii) if delivered by registered or certified mail (postage prepaid, return receipt requested), it is considered received upon receipt as indicated by the date on the signed receipt. If a party refuses to accept notice or if notice cannot be delivered because of a change in address for which no notice was given, then it is considered received when the notice is rejected or unable to be delivered. If the notice is received after 5:00pm on a business day at the location specified in the address for that party, or on a day that is not a business day, then the notice is considered received at 9:00am on the next business day.

11.5 Severability. This section deals with what happens if a portion of the Contract is found to be unenforceable. If that’s the case, the unenforceable portion will be changed to the minimum extent necessary to make it enforceable, unless that change is not permitted by law, in which case the portion will be disregarded. If any portion of the Contract is changed or disregarded because it is unenforceable, the rest of the Contract is still enforceable.

11.6 Signatures. The Client and the Model must sign this document using Bonsai’s e-signing system. These electronic signatures count as originals for all purposes.

11.7 Governing Law. The laws of the state of New Jersey govern the rights and obligations of the Client and the Model under this Contract, without regard to conflict of law principles of that state.

11.8 Entire Contract. This Contract represents the parties’ final and complete understanding of this job and the subject matter discussed in this Contract. This Contract supersedes all other contracts (both written and oral) between the parties.


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