The Importance Of Terms & Conditions

“Read carefully anything that requires your signature. Remember the big print giveth and the small print taketh away” – H Jackson Brown Jr


Whilst understandably not the sexiest part of setting up a new business, having robust terms in place is absolutely essential when a new business begins trading and should therefore be a priority for business owners. Terms & conditions protect your business and create certainty as to each parties’ rights, duties and responsibilities. Furthermore these terms can be relied on when things go wrong, for example to deal with issues surrounding late payment or cancellation of a contract.

The following are key areas which should be generally be covered in a business’s standard terms & conditions:

  • Definition of the goods and/or services to be provided
  • Payment
  • Guarantees and/or warranties
  • Delivery
  • Termination/notice period
  • Governing law

There is no legal requirement to include terms & conditions on invoices. However, it is common practice to include your terms on the back of invoices or to direct customers to the policy on your website.

Time taken on drafting effective terms at the outset will ultimately be time and money saved dealing with needless disputes in the future.

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Terms & conditions

Terms And Policies For An Online Market Place

If you operate a website, there are generally three essential documents needed to protect your business.

  • Terms & Conditions of Website Use –containing the main set of terms governing the relationship between you and your customers.
  • Privacy Policy – setting out the terms on which you process any personal data of customers visiting the website. Having a privacy policy in place is important, as you could be fined or even prosecuted if you collect personal information without informing your users, or if you violate your own privacy policy.
  • Cookies Policy – If you use cookies, you are required to inform your website users. For more information on using cookies, please visit https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-pecr/cookies-and-similar-technologies/.

Keep It Simple

In a recent study titled ‘The Biggest Lie on the Internet: Ignoring the Privacy Policies and Terms of Service Policies of Social Networking Services’ 543 participants were asked to read a 7,977 word privacy policy to join up to a social media service. A shocking 98% missed a clause stating that they would pay for the service with their firstborn child.

Moral of the story: keep all terms as clear and concise as possible.

No ‘One Size Fits All Approach’

No two businesses are the same and it is therefore important that your terms & conditions reflect your specific business needs.

Whilst templated ‘standard-form’ documents have been provided for free on the Yorkshire Powerhouse website to assist with protecting your business, these should be used as a starting point only and should be amended as required.  Please note that our templates are designed for business–to–business transactions.  If your customers are individuals (as opposed to businesses), we recommend that you seek formal legal advice.

Yorkshire Powerhouse – helping out with Terms & Conditions
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Yorkshire Powerhouse Limited is a company registered in England & Wales No. 10237925.
Registered address: Unit 14 New Mills Brougham Road, Marsden, Huddersfield, England, HD7 6AZ