Businesses are increasingly relying on independent contractors to offer them more flexibility when completing projects in order to avoid and unnecessary headaches. For the advantages of hiring an independent contractor, you may sacrifice some control over how they perform the job. However, you will still have a lot of control over the agreement as long as you clarify several things in the contract with your independent contractor.
Clarify That the Other Party Is an Independent Contractor
Any independent contractor agreement you craft should clearly state that the individual is, in fact, an independent contractor. This helps to ensure that there is no ambiguity. Make it clear that the independent contractor will be responsible for paying all taxes. Also, your independent contractor must be responsible for providing all of the materials and equipment needed to perform the task.
Clarify What the Contractor Is Expected to Deliver
Include in the agreement exactly what services the contractor will be expected to provide. Have a business transaction law attorney read over the description of services and help you make the description as clear as possible.
Clarify Any Restrictive Covenants
These refer to any actions that you may wish to restrict your independent contractor from taking. For example, you may be concerned with the contractor taking advantage of trade secrets that they may be able to access. However, you will want to speak with your attorney about whether these provisions are reasonable because if they are not, then they will be more difficult to enforce.
Clarify Confidentiality Requirements
Naturally, your independent contractors may have access to information that they will need to keep confidential. The contract should make explicit what information should be considered confidential. For example, if the independent contractor will have access to customer information, they need to be instructed on how to secure these private details.
Clarify When the Agreement Will End
You may decide that the contract ends at a specific date with the option of having it renewed. Or, you may have specific conditions that need to be met for your relationship to come to an end. You may choose to end the contract at any time and you should specify this detail.
You may also wish to include conditions in which the independent contractor might violate the agreement and you may end the contract. If you're not sure if anything else should be included in your contract, consult with an attorney immediately. They can provide further information regarding business transaction law.