User experience (UX) contract template

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User experience is essential to running a successful online business, and more and more businesses are hiring UX professionals to help them. Read our definitive guide on UX contract templates, because we break down everything you need to know to create a clear, comprehensive contract.

UX contract templates need to have the perfect mix of detail and flexibility in order to serve the needs of both parties. They need to include clauses that deal with intellectual property and confidentiality, as well as clear scopes of work and termination clauses.

Our guide covers:

  • What a UK contract is
  • Time to use a UX contract template
  • Elements to include in a UX contract
  • Different types of UX contract
  • Ways to use Bonsai’s UX contract template
  • Tips for crafting a winning UX contract
  • Frequently asked questions.

Ready to learn all about UX contract templates? Let’s get into it.

What Is a UX Contract?

A UX contract is an agreement that governs the relationship between the client and the designer or design agency in charge of user experience. The contract outlines the scope of the project, details the responsibilities of both parties and establishes payment terms for the completed services.

The document may contain sections that specify terms for deliverables, timelines, and success metrics. The document ideally also includes confidentiality clauses for both parties. This protects sensitive information shared as part of the project and protects the intellectual property in the agreement.

The contract makes sure the client and designer have a clear understanding of obligations, expectations, and the way things will be done in order to successfully collaborate.

The contract is drafted for the purpose of managing tasks and avoiding scope creep, ensuring the project is a success. It may also contain clauses allowing for review and modification as approved processes are updated and evaluated, ensuring both parties are able to implement revised tasks.

Benefits of Using the UX Contract

Using a contract when getting into a UX agreement is essential — it clarifies and finalizes the roles in the project, creating a more structured workflow. Defining responsibilities supports both parties when it comes to keeping their focus on core competencies.

A good UX contract ensures the quality of work by setting out expectations and criteria for success, which ensures the goals of both the client and designer align, especially once they have negotiated. A contract also clearly states payment terms, rates, and expenses, reducing future disputes.

A contract protects the intellectual property of the products and designs created, which is crucial in the design field. Lastly, a contract preserves confidentiality and protects customer data, while providing a framework for any unexpected dispute resolution.

When Should You Use a UX Contract Template?

A UX contract template is a helpful tool for almost any UX agreement. Using a template saves time and effort, and ensures that you’ve included all the necessary essential information.

Recognizing the Need for Formal Agreements

Although it might sound pleasant to keep your business relationships casual, formal agreements are always a good idea. A formal agreement establishes payment terms and clarifies the roles in the working relationship.

A template is very helpful for this as it provides a predefined structure that is binding between the client and the designer, ensuring all legal obligations are met.

Kickstarting a New UX Design Project

As you kickstart a new UX design project, using a UX contract template that outlines the scope of the tasks and mandates deliverables within a set timeline is crucial.

It is customized for setting expectations right from the beginning and provides guidelines for the success of the projects.

Collaborating with New Clients or Agencies

When collaborating with new clients and agencies, a UX contract is agreed upon by both in order to formalize the relationship.

The contract specifies terms for services to be provided, and details compensation and expenses protocols.

Establishing Clear Deliverables and Timelines

A UX contract is crucial for establishing clear timeframes and deliverables.

The template sets the timeline for projects to be completed, and details the responsibilities of the parties involved, ensuring that user experience is the absolute priority. It also prevents scope creep from slowing down the project timeline.

Safeguarding Intellectual Property Rights

Intellectual property rights are extremely important for designers, and a UX contract protects the intellectual property created throughout the business relationship. It has provisions for handling ownership and use of IP, which prevents misunderstandings and disputes.

Want to try a contract template to see if it’s the right choice for you? Here at Bonsai, we have a UX contract template that’s absolutely free!

In fact, at Bonsai we have a huge range of contract templates that cover every aspect of the design process, from this web design contract template to our software development contract template!

Once you choose one, simply download your template, customize it, and then save it as a PDF to send to your customers. You can even send it directly within Bonsai for your client to sign directly.

What to Include in the UX Contract Template

Although every UX agreement is different, there are certain factors that every UX contract template should include.

Client and Designer Information

Always include detailed client and designer information, including the name, address, and contact details of all pirates.

This establishes who is subject to changes in the agreement, in the case of amendments.

Description of Services to be Provided

This section clarifies the roles in the contract and outlines the scope of the work to be provided. This section is customized for the client’s needs, which ensures the quality of user experience.

These services could include:

  • Logo designs or branding
  • Wireframing
  • Prototyping
  • Interaction design
  • User flow & journeys
  • User testing
  • User research and analysis
  • Analytics & metrics
  • A/B testing
  • Emotional design
  • Feedback collection
  • Usability
  • Accessibility standards and systems.

Payment Terms and Method

A section dedicated to payment terms and methods is essential, stating the rate, fees, and expenses expected, as well as the compensation structure, which is agreed upon by both parties.

Design Process Overview & Timeline

This segment should include an overview of the design process, as well as a timeline to achieve goals. This sets the timeline for each project phase and also requires revisions in a set timeframe to meet milestones.

Ownership and Rights to Work Product

This section protects the intellectual property of the UX designs and makes it clear how the rights are to be used by the client upon completion of the project.

Confidentiality Clause

This clause ensures both parties and any others who are associated (such as employees or contractors) are discreet when it comes to sensitive information. This safeguards company information and client data throughout the timeline of the contract.

Indemnification Clause

This clause states that each party agrees to protect the other against certain responsibilities or liabilities arising during the execution of the project. The reason for this is to protect against losses caused by something unforeseen.

Dispute Resolution Clause

This section outlines the agreed method for solving disputes and provides a blueprint for how to settle disputes without the termination of the contract.

Severability Clause

Having a severability clause in place means that if one part of the contract is deemed unenforceable, the rest of the contract stays valid. This is subject to changes in the law or jurisdictional differences.

Termination Clause

This clause details the circumstances under which each party can end the contract. It includes notice periods and defines the obligations in the event of termination.

Types of UX Contracts

The type of UX contract you choose will depend on the type of project. Factors that affect the type of contract include length, scope of the job, and payment types.

Fixed-Price Contracts

This is the type of contract to choose when the scope and deliverables for a project are set in stone. This contract is agreed upon by parties with the understanding that the work will be completed for a set fee. This creates a clear document that mandates deliverables within the agreed project costs, ensuring the quality of products and user experience.

Hourly or Time-and-Materials Contracts

Hourly or time-and-materials contracts offer a payment structure based on the actual time spent on the project and expenses.

This is customized for projects where scope creep is a risk — it takes into account that the project requires revisions in the course of work, and offers flexibility for clients and designers.

Retainer Agreements

A retainer agreement is used in circumstances where ongoing support or services are needed from the designer. Under a retainer agreement, the client pays a monthly fee to reserve access to the designer’s services over a specific time period.

If you want to try one of Bonsai’s many contract templates, why not sign up now for free! It’s super easy and will save you lots of time and effort.

Whether you’re looking for a simple UX contract template, or whether you’re an app or web developer, there’s a contract to suit every type of design professional.

How to Use the UX Contract Template

Using a UX contract template is easy, you just have to understand what you’re trying to achieve and have a clear idea of the project goals.

Selection of the Appropriate Template

Firstly, make sure you choose the right template! Bonsai has a huge range of contract templates you can download for free, but wherever you source your template, make sure it suits your needs.

The chosen template should be tailored to fit the specific type of project, and should also reflect the type of payment arrangement you prefer.

Remember the documents are binding between the client and designer, so you need to be sure it’s the right template before you add your signatures!

Understanding Key Contractual Terms

Make sure you research and expand your knowledge of all contractual terms included in your contract before you proceed.

This includes language relating to:

  • Obligations
  • Deliverables
  • Intellectual property rights
  • Confidentiality
  • Payment terms
  • Dispute resolution systems.

Customizing the Template to Fit Project Specifics

The best templates are fully customizable. You may need to alter the UX contract template to clarify the roles in the project, or to reflect the scope of work or responsibilities.

Ensure the template reflects the unique aspects of the project and meets the client’s needs.

Defining the Scope of Work Clearly

Ensure the template is explicit regarding the tasks and services to be provided to the client. This prevents scope creep and sets clear expectations for the work.

A clear scope ensures quality of user experience from the designer.

Setting Payment Terms and Schedules

Make sure you customize your contract to reflect the rates, fees, or expenses that will be incurred as part of the project, as well as the schedule for payments and how the payment statements will be delivered.

This ensures everyone is on the same page when it comes to compensation and there is less risk of disputes.

Winning Tips for an Effective UX Contract

Anyone can create a UX contract, but for your contract to be effective and stand out, you need to ensure you incorporate clear objectives, defined scope, and details regarding timeframes and revision.

Begin with Clear Objectives

Beginning with clear objectives is a recipe for success. State what the project will achieve in terms of user experience and make sure there is an understanding between the designer and client regarding these goals.

Define Scope Precisely to Avoid Scope Creep

It’s easy for design projects to run off course, leading to the dreaded “scope creep”.

List the expected deliverables and tasks, and include any limitations to the objectives. This ensures all parties stay within the agreed boundaries.

Emphasize Deadlines and Timelines

Dates and milestones keep your project on track and help to manage client expectations. Ensure your deadlines and timelines are clear and agreed upon right from the beginning to maintain momentum and avoid stagnation.

Specify Terms for Revisions and Alterations

Revisions are an expected part of any design project, so make sure they’re accounted for in your contract template. State how many rounds of revisions are expected, and clearly define what a revision is compared to what a new request is.

Key Takeaways

A UX contract is a formal agreement that details the project scope and terms of a business relationship. This offers various benefits, such as clarity, IP protection, and clear payment terms.

A UX contract is essential when formalizing business relationships, beginning new design projects, or defining deliveries and timelines. It is also key for protecting intellectual property rights.

Included in the UX contract should be the details of all parties involved, a clear scope of work, a timeline, and payment information. It should also include confidentiality clauses and dispute-resolution tools.

There are different types of UX contracts, including fixed-price contracts, where the fee is agreed upon upfront, hourly/time-and-materials contracts for flexible billing, and retainer agreements for ongoing services. Which one you choose will depend on your unique circumstances

To get the most out of a UX contract template, make sure you choose the right contract to suit your needs and ensure you understand all contractual terms, including legal jargon. It’s also essential to be clear on payment terms and scope of work.

To create a winning UX contract, include clear objectives, emphasize deadlines and scope of work, and include details on revisions and alterations.

To get access to Bonsai’s full range of contract templates, sign up for free today! All our contracts have been legally vetted, so you can formalize your business relationships with ease and peace of mind.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does a UX Designer Do?

The primary role of a UX designer is to create an accessible and engaging experience for customers using a variety of products and services.

It is their responsibility to take a human-focused approach to their design by analyzing competitors and customers, developing prototypes and wireframes, conducting user testing and coordinating with UI designers.

Where Can I Find a Reliable UX Design Contract Template?

You don’t have to look far to find a reliable UX design contract template because Bonsai has you covered. This template has been designed specifically to cover all the bases you need when contracting for UX design work.

Can a UX Design Contract Template be Customized to Fit Specific Project Needs?

Of course! Bonsai recognises that one contract won’t work in every situation. Therefore, our contracts are highly customizable, allowing you to change elements that don’t fit your current work and add in those that do.

Frequently Asked Questions
Questions about this template.

Template preview

User experience (UX) contract template

UX Contract Template

First Name
Last Name
Acme LLC.
First Name
Last Name
Corporation Corp.

This Contract is between Client (the "Client") and Company, a California limited liability company (the "Designer").

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


1.1 Project. The Client is hiring the Designer to do the following: Create user flows, wireframes, and prototypes

1.2 Schedule. The Designer will begin work on [START DATE] and will continue until the work is completed. This Contract can be ended by either Client or Designer at any time, pursuant to the terms of Section 6, Term and Termination.

1.3 Payment. The Client will pay the Designer a rate of $150.00 (USD) per hour. Of this, the Client will pay the Designer $1,500.00 (USD) before work begins.

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

1.5 Invoices. The Designer will invoice the Client at the end of the project. 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 1.5% per month on the outstanding amount.

1.6 Support. The Designer 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 Designer 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 Designer 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 Designer hereby gives the Client this work product once the Client pays for it in full. This means the Designer 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 Designer's Use Of Work Product. Once the Designer gives the work product to the Client, the Designer does not have any rights to it, except those that the Client explicitly gives the Designer here. The Client gives permission to use the work product as part of portfolios and websites, in galleries, and in other media, so long as it is to showcase the work and not for any other purpose. The Client does not give permission 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 Designer's Help Securing Ownership. In the future, the Client may need the Designer's help to show that the Client owns the work product or to complete the transfer. The Designer agrees to help with that. For example, the Designer may have to sign a patent application. The Client will pay any required expenses for this. If the Client can’t find the Designer, the Designer agrees that the Client can act on the Designer's behalf to accomplish the same thing. The following language gives the Client that right: if the Client can’t find the Designer after spending reasonable effort trying to do so, the Designer hereby irrevocably designates and appoints the Client as the Designer's agent and attorney-in-fact, which appointment is coupled with an interest, to act for the Designer and on the Designer'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 Designer's IP That Is Not Work Product. During the course of this project, the Designer might use intellectual property that the Designer 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 Designer is not giving the Client this background IP. But, as part of the Contract, the Designer 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 Designer cannot take back this grant, and this grant does not end when the Contract is over.

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


The Designer 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 Designer asks for permission beforehand and the Client agrees to it in writing. If the Designer uses employees or subcontractors, the Designer must make sure they follow the obligations in this paragraph, as well.


Until this Contract ends, the Designer 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 Designer puts out a general ad and someone who happened to work for the Client responds. In that case, the Designer may hire that candidate. The Designer 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 Designer Has Right To Give Client Work Product. The Designer promises that it owns the work product, that the Designer 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 Designer uses employees or subcontractors, the Designer also promises that these employees and subcontractors have signed contracts with the Designer giving the Designer any rights that the employees or subcontractors have related to the Designer's background IP and work product.

5.4 Designer Will Comply With Laws. The Designer 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 Designer promises that its work product does not and will not infringe on someone else’s intellectual property rights, that the Designer 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 Designer 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 Designer if the Designer 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 Designer with material to incorporate into the work product, the Client promises that this material does not infringe on someone else’s intellectual property rights.


This Contract is ongoing until the work is completed. 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 Designer must immediately stop working as soon as it receives this notice, unless the notice says otherwise. The Client will pay the Designer for the work done up until when the Contract ends and will reimburse the Designer 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).


The Client is hiring the Designer as an independent contractor. The following statements accurately reflect their relationship:

  • The Designer 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 Designer is responsible for determining when, where, and how it will carry out the work.
  • The Client will not provide the Designer with any training.
  • The Client and the Designer do not have a partnership or employer-employee relationship.
  • The Designer cannot enter into contracts, make promises, or act on behalf of the Client.
  • The Designer is not entitled to the Client’s benefits (e.g., group insurance, retirement benefits, retirement plans, vacation days).
  • The Designer 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 Designer or any of the Designer's employees or subcontractors.


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

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


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 Designer or both. For example, if the Client gets sued for something that the Designer did, then the Designer 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 Designer agrees to indemnify the Client (and its affiliates 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 Designer has done under this Contract; (ii) a breach by the Designer of its obligations under this Contract; or (iii) a breach by the Designer of the promises it is making in Section 5 (Representations).

10.3 Designer Indemnity. In this Contract, the Client agrees to indemnify the Designer (and its affiliates 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 Designer. The Designer 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 Designer'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 Designer 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 Designer 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 California govern the rights and obligations of the Client and the Designer 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.


First Name
Last Name
Acme LLC.
First Name
Last Name
Corporation Corp.