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Using independent contractor agreements to protect your interests

Managing relationships with contractors can be difficult at the best of times. When things go wrong and there is no written agreement, resolving issues can be costly and damage mutually beneficial business relationships. Adam Wojtonis, Thomson Reuters

What is an independent contractor agreement?

An independent contractor agreement is used when an organisation arranges for an external person or company to provide services and is not an employer-employee relationship.

Engaging the services of an independent contractor can be useful when you have a non-ongoing need for specialised services or specific short-term projects that need to be completed.

Why use an independent contractor agreement?

When entering into a business relationship, it is always smart to take steps to reduce your exposure to risk. Engaging an independent contractor to provide you services presents you with a unique set of risks and obligations.

An independent contract agreement can provide clarity in your business relationship by:

  • preventing disputes by outlining the terms and conditions of the relationship at the outset;
  • avoiding doubt as to the contractor's status by stating it is not an employment relationship;
  • ensuring you own the intellectual property rights from the work that you pay for;
  • specifying how the contract can be terminated before the work is complete;
  • allocating risk and liability for loss and damages from the work that is done; and
  • serving as proof of what was agreed: the work that needs to be done, when, and how much it will cost.

Benefits of Cleardocs Independent Contractor Agreement

  • Easy to understand agreement written in plain language to avoid misunderstandings.
  • Assists to comply with employment law and clarifying contractor relationships.
  • Your intellectual property rights are protected.
  • Easy to use question interface.
  • Extensive online help and local phone support.

More Cleardocs information on related topics

You can read earlier ClearLaw articles on HR topics.

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Lawyer in Profile

Julian Smith
Julian Smith
Partner
+61 3 9258 3864
julian.smith@maddocks.com.au

Qualifications: BA, LLB, Monash University, LLM, University of Melbourne

Julian is a Partner in Maddocks Commercial team. He advises a diverse range of clients across the Australian commercial and financial services landscape.

Julian's corporate practice spans various sectors, including financial services, professional services, and family-owned enterprises. He advises on:

  • capital raising,
  • disclosures,
  • restructures,
  • mergers and acquisitions,
  • corporate governance,
  • directors' duties, and
  • trusts, corporations, and securities law.

Julianís financial services practice involves advising financial market participants on the entire financial services lifecycle including fund structuring, management options, and compliance with regulatory requirements.

Julian also offers guidance on alternative and disruptive financial services businesses, such as online foreign exchanges, internal markets, and management rights schemes.

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