Web Design Contract Essentials Checklist

Here’s a quick list to use as a checklist against your existing contract:

1. Scope of Work and Scope Creep
Manage scope creep by specifying exactly what is and is not included so you can charge for the additional work, if appropriate.

2. Client Amends and Revisions
Be sure to specify the number of design comps you’ll present and to limit the number of revisions you’ll allow, or be faced with changes ad infinitum.

3. Dealing With Client Delays
Waiting for a client to provide content can be one of the most frustrating parts of any project. Be sure your contract addresses the issue of what will happen if the client delays, for any reason.

4. Who Owns the Website You’ve Built?
Whether or not to transfer copyright to the client is probably the most controversial subject among Web professionals. Whatever you decide, be sure you understand how the copyright laws work in the country in which you’re doing business.

5. Legal Boilerplate Clauses
Boilerplate clauses such as Limitation of Liability and Choice of Law give you the opportunity to limit the amount of risk and liability you’ll incur in the event that you’re accused of breach of contract. Failure to include these can result in lawsuits over consequential damages and traveling to other States, Provinces or countries to defend yourself in court.

6. Milestones and Project Completion
Having clearly defined and agreed upon milestones, with “sign offs” on each phase, will prevent the client from requesting changes to a previously approved phase — or at least from expecting that you should do it for free.

7. Client and/or Third Party Page Modifications
Be sure your contract states that you are not responsible to repair any damage done to the site by the client or any other party if they attempt to modify it (at least, not for free).

8. Maintenance and Technical Support
Unless you enjoyed repeated calls from clients who’ve lost their email passwords (again), make sure that the issue of Maintenance and Technical Support is clearly addressed in your contract.

9. Payment Terms
You don’t want to be ambiguous about when and how often you’ll get paid. A percentage up front and the remainder on or near completion date are standard practices.

Interested? read the full article at SitePoint.

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