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Contract tips for a noob

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  • Contract tips for a noob

    Hi guys,

    I'm starting a business, and I need some advice on contracts for those of you who have one (as I understand many designers don't bother at all).
    Did you draw them alone, with the help of a lawyer, download them online? I literally don't know where to start and I can't afford much at the moment, so best case scenario seems to be downloading one. Which also seems like a horrible idea because it's such a subjective thing. Thanks for any advice.

  • #2
    No dice?


    • #3
      Dude, you posted that at 5:30am in Boston, even earlier in the rest of the US.... and no idea how late in the evening it might be where you are....

      As for contracts, those designers that don't use them are only courting trouble. Contracts are expected in the professional world and you don't want to be working with clients that don't get that.

      None of us here are lawyers.
      There are several design organizations that have sample contracts posted online. As examples only. It would be highly recommended that any contract you plan on using repeatedly be looked at by a contract lawyer.

      And while you're at it, you may want to check with an accountant regarding all applicable taxes you need to be charging/paying, and look into a business entity type (LLC or Corporation in the US) that separates your personal assets from your business. Plus a myriad of other things related to actually running a small business in your area,, because that is what you will be doing.


      • #4
        Dude, thanks for the reply.

        First post was around 10pm in Ireland, so about 7 hrs earlier in Boston I guess? Not that early.
        I don't know many "lawyer designers" either. :P I guess I'll start by looking at a few more detailed examples online then, just to get the gist of it, and then go over it with a contract lawyer.

        Thanks for the tip.


        • #5
          Take a look at AIGA's contract templates:


          • #6
            Must have taken the mods a while to cycle it through. Came up on my board at 530am Boston time. But I needed coffee first.
            We always tag anything as looking remotely legal with the 'we aren't lawyers' statement. Don't want anyone taking our advice to court.
            AIGA and GAG have sample templates, though not sure how well they work in Ireland. If there are design societies there, you might try those as well.


            • #7
              Allworth Press has a book called "Business and Legal Forms for Graphic Designers". It comes with a CD with their sample forms. They publish a number of books relating to the business of graphic design.


              • #8
                Thanks Mojo I'll definitely check it out. Looks super boring and super useful.


                • #9
                  Hi there I'm Chris. I use a mobile application called Legitimo currently for my graphic design company. It seems to work pretty well. I hope this helps.






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