A virtual assistant is an independent contractor. Therefore, you can't hire a contractor to do some work for you without a valid contract in place. In many instances, you might prefer relying on verbal agreements. A verbal agreement is not appropriate as it exposes the two of you to the possibility of misunderstandings. The problem with misunderstandings is that they can be costly to the client and the VA; hence, the need for preparing and signing a virtual assistance contract.
A contract clarifies issues
A contract clarifies issues such as the money that the client should pay the virtual assistant. The contract clarifies the role the VA is expected to perform for the client. It explains the duties of each party that signs the agreement. Without these clarifications, it becomes hard to know whether the VA or client has failed in doing his/her part. The contract is necessary to clarify the measures to take in case of a dispute between the client and his virtual assistant.
A contract is great for solving disputes
According to an article on lexology.com library, many times, the verbal agreement between a client and the virtual assistant is enough and there's no need for referring to a contract. Even when a contract is in place and properly signed, the client rarely disagrees with the virtual assistant to a point of consulting the contract to see the way forward. Nevertheless, when something goes wrong, the client and VA will have nothing to rely on except their word against each other. Unfortunately, this rarely bodes well for the two.
A contract serves many purposes
A properly crafted virtual assistant contract serves two main purposes. First, it acts as a legal agreement that binds the client to the virtual assistant. It sets the conditions under which the two are to work together. Secondly, the contract shows the professionalism of both parties. It shows that the client and VA both take their roles in the project seriously and want nothing to stand in the way of a fruitful and mutually beneficial relationship.
A virtual assistant can prepare and sign several types of contracts. For example, he can sign independent contractor agreement and use it with clients who need his services only once. He can also sign a retainer agreement, which is for clients with whom he would like to forge a long-term relationship. A Non-Disclosure Agreement is also permissible. In some cases, a subcontracting agreement would also be welcome if the VA thinks it necessary.
Therefore, a virtual assistant contract is better than verbal agreements.