Freelance Writer Contract

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Freelance Writer Contract

A Brief Introduction of Freelance Writer Contract

A freelance writer contract is a contract between a freelance writer and the client that the writer is working for. The agreement lays down the scope of the engagement of the writer. In today’s times, people choose to freelance as it guarantees a lot of flexibility for the writer. Whenever the writer takes up a freelance project, it is necessary to put down all the important terms in writing and determine the obligations of both parties. This helps to bring clarity to the entire transaction and making each party aware of their responsibilities under it. 

Who Takes the Freelance Writer Contract?

This contract is entered into between a writer who is working on a freelance basis and the client who hires the writer for a particular project.   

Purpose of the Freelance Writer Contract

The purpose of a freelance writer contract is to lay down in writing the tasks that shall be performed by the writer, the fee that shall be payable to him/her and any other important details as may be required. A framework is created for the entire transaction, and the responsibilities of both parties are clearly defined. It is imperative to clarify the scope or the purpose for which the writer has been hired. Any specific requirements can be mentioned in the agreement. A written agreement is crucial to prove the details agreed to by the parties and a breach of agreement if any, and hence parties always prefer having a written agreement in place.

Contents of the Freelance Writer Contract

Like any other contract, the contract for freelance writers must first mention the names and contact information of both parties, i.e. the writer and the client. If the writer is being hired for a long term project, the term of the agreement must be mentioned. 

The agreement must then clearly define the scope of the writer’s task or tasks. This may include the number of articles that the writer has been hired to write, the style in which the writer is required to write, the number of words that the client wants from the writer and other such terms.

The contract should also state the fee that will be payable to the writer. The fee may be per-word, per-page or in any other format that the parties agree to. It must also mention the method by which the task must be submitted to the client. The deadline by which such submission is to be made is also required to be mentioned. The contract should also include a clause for a ‘kill fee’. A kill fee is any fee paid for premature termination of a contract. The contract should mention the scope after which a kill fee would become applicable. This ensures that the freelancers’ efforts don’t go in vain

A very important clause in the agreement is who shall own the copyrights in the work created by the writer. It is crucial that this is stated in the agreement to prevent any dispute at a later stage.  

How to Draft the Freelance Writer Contract?

  • The parties must first negotiate among themselves as to the terms and conditions under which the writer is being appointed.
  • All such details must be reduced to writing. If you’re unsure of what to put in a contract, you can always use a freelance writer contract templates. These templates will give you an idea of the provisions that you would be benefitted by including in your agreement to understand the details that must be made part of the agreement.
  • Once the contract has been drafted, it must be reviewed and signed by both parties. 

[ Also Read: Freelance Contract ]

Negotiation Strategy

Prior to drafting such an agreement, the writer negotiates in such a manner ensuring that he/she receives adequate compensation for the work that is being done. The agreement must be fair to both parties concerned and must seek to reduce the scope of any conflict between them. 

Benefits and Drawbacks of the Freelance Writer Contract

  • A benefit of this agreement is that it serves as proof of the terms that have been agreed to between the parties.  
  • It gives the client the freedom to hire the writer for a single article also if so needed. 
  • The duties and obligations of both parties are clearly laid out in the agreement, and this minimizes the scope for any misunderstanding between the parties. 
  • In case one party breaches the terms of the agreement, the other party will have certain remedies in place. 

What Happens in Case of Violation?

There may be multiple examples of a violation of a freelance writer agreement. Such violations may include the client failing to make the payment within the stipulated time or the writer not submitting the content within the deadline. Usually, parties try to solve their disputes through mediation, initially, as, through this method, they can reach a solution that is satisfactory to both parties. 

If no solution is reached through mediation(1), the aggrieved party can institute a suit in court. The party that has suffered losses can claim damages for the same. If monetary damages are not deemed to be sufficient, the court may also decide to pass an order for specific performance of the contract. In such a case, the party that has breached the contract will have to perform his / her end of the contract.

In conclusion, this agreement is becoming increasingly popular in today’s times as the number of freelance writers is increasing. Each party wishes to protect their interests and rights and hence entering into a written agreement becomes very important. This agreement is a fairly simple one and is easy to draft.