IT contracts are one of the most common kinds of legal documents in the world today. Whether they are provided over the internet or not, most goods and services today have at least some connection to the digital world. While many elements of IT contracts remain the same as in standard contracts, there are many more that require special attention and skill to make sure that they don’t harm your business in the long run. We are a team of practical IT lawyers who have helped many clients protect themselves over the years with clear, simple and strong IT contracts.
What is an IT Contract?
An IT contract can be any contract that has at least some connection to the world of information technology. You sign an IT contract when you order goods over the internet, sell your time as a web developer, or even licence someone else to use your software. Because of this, many historically ‘offline’ contracts can become IT contracts if the circumstances are right – even where they are simply accepted online. Some of the most common IT contracts include:
- Support and Maintenance Services Agreement – where one company provides support and maintenance for software or hardware that another company uses
- Development Services Agreement – where one company provides development services to another company
- Consulting Services Agreement – where one company provides consulting services to another company
- Professional Services Agreement – where one company provides professional services to another company
- Licence Agreement – where one company or individual licences their software or other intellectual property to another company or individual
- Software as a Service Agreement – where one company provides software to another company or individual, via a web or mobile application
- IT Support Agreement or IT Services Agreement
Sometimes IT contracts can overlap with other kinds of contracts. The most common overlap is with Reseller Agreements or Channel Agreements. Some of the most common contracts that overlap with IT contracts include:
- Agency Agreement – where one company agrees to sell a second company’s goods or services, by getting customers to buy from the second company directly
- Distributor Agreements – where one company agrees to sell a second company’s goods or services, by buying from the second company themselves and selling to their own customers
- Value-Added Reseller Agreements – where one company agrees to sell a second company’s goods or services, by buying from the second company themselves, adding their own goods or services, and selling to combined goods or services to their own customers
- White-Label or Private-Label Agreement – where one company agrees to let a second company sell its goods or services, and make it look like the goods or services come from the second company
- Manufacturing and Supply Agreement – where one company agrees to manufacture or supply goods for another company
- Sale and Leaseback Agreement – where one company agrees to sell some of its assets to a second company, and the second company agrees to lease those assets back to them
Other contracts that are closely related to IT contracts include:
- Teaming Agreement – where one company teams up with a second company to provide an indivisible service to a third company
- Collaboration Agreement – where one company collaborates with a second company to provide a divisible service to a third company
- Independent Contractor Agreement – where an individual provides bespoke services to a company
- Sub-contractor Agreement – where one company provides services to a second company, which has itself been asked to provide those services (or more) to a third company
How We Can Help You
We can help you to create simple and strong IT contracts. We draft in plain language, which will help to set out clearly what both parties expect from one another. Not only will this protect your business – it will also help to get your contracts signed faster.
We have three options for you to choose from, which we set out below. The options complement one another and you may wish to switch between them at different times.
You can draft your own IT contracts by yourself by:
- attending one of our public IT contracts workshops (or asking us to run one in-house for you) or webinars;
- subscribing to our newsletter and reading our legal insights; and
- writing your own IT contracts with the knowledge you’ve learned.
This option is good for organisations that are confident in their legal drafting skills, and want to keep the costs as low as possible.
You can always start with this option, and choose another option later if you feel that you need it.
You can draft your own IT contracts with our guidance by joining one of our Contracts Programmes. Our programmes help you to empower yourself in the drafting, negotiation, signing and management of your various legal documents. You can set your own pace through the programmes, and we will give you practical guidance through webinars, written content, and templates that you can download and use in your organisation.
This option is good for organisations that have some skills in legal drafting, and want to keep costs relatively low.
If you want help drafting a specific contract (or type of contract), you can ask us to provide you with bespoke IT contracts. We help to ensure that your contracts are easy to understand and sign by drafting in plain language, and we customise them with your organisation’s branding. This option is more expensive than the other options because we work with you directly to create a custom solution.
This option is good for organisations that would prefer not to draft their contracts themselves, or need focused help in specific circumstances.
You can always request this option alongside the other two. If you’re interested, you can enquire at the bottom of this page and we can send you a fixed price quote regarding your matter.
Global IT Contracts
There are many legal jurisdictions in the world, each with their own histories and views on what is or is not allowed under their laws. Despite this, there many legal principles that are common across all jurisdictions, and standards that all legal documents should work towards. We draft global IT contracts that cover your fundamental legal requirements, wherever you need them to work.
We have provided top-quality IT contracts for over 20 years and have drafted for organisations all over the world. We take pride in our ability to offer practical, effective advice to our clients, including our top tips for IT contracts.
Some of the ways that we have helped clients with IT contracts include:
- We have taught many IT goods and services customers and providers about relevant IT contract laws through workshops and webinars;
- We have given our clients the necessary tools to run their IT goods and services businesses by providing them with simple and strong IT contracts;
- We have protected our clients’ rights and clarified the counterparties’ obligations by reviewing, commenting on and revising IT contracts that they are party to;
- We have been on hand to give our clients real-time advice and insights on IT contract related issues over the phone and through video conferencing;
- We have given our clients clarity and legal certainty by writing legal opinions on IT contract issues;
- We have helped small businesses to grow by providing them with free website terms to protect their interests and comply with relevant IT contract laws.
- We have structured and negotiated several large systems integration, development, and implementation transactions. We have been involved in several significant agreements involving the development or implementation of technology solutions and the on-going support and maintenance for those solutions. Our experience covers every phase of the systems integration process:
- identifying business and technical objectives and requirements;
- preparing specifications and requests for proposals;
- assisting clients in evaluating and selecting suppliers;
- drafting and negotiating contracts;
- implementing project management best practices; and
- resolving disputes.
We have done work for clients in various countries across the globe, including multinationals. They include service providers, customers, resellers, marketers, developers, publishers, financial institutions, financial advisors, insurers, the media, industry bodies, and many others.
Examples of the matters we have worked on include:
- Software as a Service Agreements – for service providers to provide services to customers via a web application that they access through an Internet browser
- Application Legal Terms – for service providers to provide services to customers via an app store application that they download and use on a device
- Legal Terms for Online Stores – for vendors offering physical or digital goods for order through an online store and delivering them to customers
- Software Development Agreements – for developers developing bespoke software for specific customers
- Software Testing Agreements – for service providers testing software on behalf of customers where someone else has developed it for them
- Web Development Agreements – for web developers developing websites for customers
- Digital Marketing Agreements – for digital marketers marketing goods or services for customers using digital technologies and mediums, such as the Internet, mobile phones or display advertising
- Reseller Agreements – for resellers to resell the IT goods or services of a third party, as an agent or distributor
We have a more comprehensive list of the matters we have worked on that is available on request.
How You Benefit
- Protect your organisation from harm by drafting contracts that are appropriate for the services provided, and which limit your liability fairly.
- Reduce the risks of a dispute between yourself and the other party by being clear about what is expected of each party, and describe how disputes are managed.
- Reduce your legal costs by managing your contracts yourself, with our guidance.
- Speed up and simplify the signing process by drafting your contracts in plain language and signing them via e-signatures.
Complete an Evaluation
Still not sure which IT contracts you need help with? Answer our IT contracts questionnaire below and we’ll help you find the help you need.