Hey readers from A List Apart. The canonical, original version of Contract Killer 3 is here: http://stuffandnonsense.co.uk/projects/contract...
Between us [company name] and you [customer name]
I'll always do my best to fulfill your needs and meet your expectations, but it’s important to have things written down so that we both know what’s what, who should do what and when, and what will happen if something goes wrong. In this contract you won’t find any complicated legal terms or long passages of unreadable text. I’ve no desire to trick you into signing something that you might later regret. What I do want is what’s best for both parties, now and in the future.
So in short;
You [customer name], located at [customer address] are hiring us [company name] located at [company address] to [design and develop a web site] for [total] as outlined in our previous correspondence. Of course it’s a little more complicated, but we’ll get to that.
What do both parties agree to do?
You: You have the authority to enter into this contract on behalf of yourself, your company or your organisation. You’ll give me everything I need to complete the project in the format I need it. You’ll review my work, provide feedback and approval in a timely manner too. Deadlines work two ways, so you’ll also be bound by dates we set together. You also agree to stick to the payment schedule set out at the end of this contract.
Us: I have the experience and ability to do everything I’ve agreed with you and I’ll do it all in a professional and timely manner. I’ll endeavour to meet every deadline that’s set and on top of that I'll maintain the confidentiality of everything you give me.
Getting down to the nitty gritty
I'll create single frame designs based on any and all direction given to me to give you an idea of the look-and-feel of the final animation. If no direction is provided for me, I'll create many different look frames to help you decide what you're looking for.
You’ll have two or more weekly opportunities to review my work and provide feedback. If, at any stage, you’re not happy with the direction my work is taking, you’ll pay me in full for everything I’ve produced until that point and cancel this contract.
I'll start animating based on the direction we've discussed in correspondence. If no animation direction is given, I'll animate something that I feel is worthy of your brand. In either situation, I'll send you low resolution tests so you can see the direction the animation is heading.
Once again, You’ll have two or more weekly opportunities to review my work and provide feedback. If, at any stage, you’re not happy with the direction my work is taking, you’ll pay me in full for everything I’ve produced until that point and cancel this contract.
Photographs and Artwork
You should supply graphic files in an editable, vector digital format. You should supply photographs in a high resolution digital format. If you choose to buy stock photographs, I can suggest stock libraries.
Format and Frame Rate
In film, there are many different formats and frame rates. I'll need to know exactly which one you're in need of in order to give you the best final product for your situation.
Here are some examples:
SD Format: 720x480 4:3, 640x360 16:9.
HD Format: 1280x720 16:9, 1920x1080 16:9, 2K.
Frame Rates: 24 fps (film and web), 29.97 fps (broadcast).
Animation takes time to render. For render times, I'll be charging my set rate for the first two hours of render. After the 2 hours, it'll be 1/2 my rate extra per render hour. The reason for this is that my computer is tied up for renders and I can't work on anything else.
Changes and revisions
Changes and revisions are a common thing in this industry. I'm definitely ok with doing changes but I charge my full rate for any changes that need to be made.
I can’t guarantee that my work will be error-free and so I can’t be liable to you or any third-party for damages, including lost profits, lost savings or other incidental, consequential or special damages, even if you’ve advised me of them. Finally, if any provision of this contract shall be unlawful, void, or for any reason unenforceable, then that provision shall be deemed severable from this contract and shall not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions.
First, you guarantee that all elements of text, images or other artwork you provide are either owned by your good selves, or that you’ve permission to use them.
Then, when your final payment has cleared, copyright will be automatically assigned as follows:
You’ll own the visual elements that I create for this project. I’ll give you source files and finished files and you should keep them somewhere safe as we’re not required to keep a copy. You own all elements of text, images and data you provided, unless someone else owns them.
I’ll own the unique combination of these elements that constitutes a complete design and I’ll license that you, exclusively and in perpetuity for this project only, unless we agree otherwise. We can provide a separate estimate for that.
I love to show off my work and share what I’ve learned with other people, so I reserve the right, with your permission, to display and link to your project as part of my portfolio and to write about it on websites, in magazine articles and in books.
We’re sure you understand how important it is as a small business that you pay the invoices that I send you promptly. As we’re also sure you’ll want to stay friends, you agree to stick tight to the following payment schedule.
But where’s all the horrible small print?
Just like a parking ticket, you can’t transfer this contract to anyone else without my permission. This contract stays in place and need not be renewed. If for some reason one part of this contract becomes invalid or unenforceable, the remaining parts of it remain in place.
Although the language is simple, the intentions are serious and this contract is a legal document under exclusive jurisdiction of United States courts.
Oh and don’t forget those men with big dogs.
The dotted line
Signed by and on behalf of [company name]
Signed by and on behalf of [customer name]
Everyone should sign above and keep a copy for their records.