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Setting Your Terms

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Drafting standard terms and conditions of business. What should be included. How they should be compiled.

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Setting Your Terms

  1. 1. Setting your Terms New Business Club, 29 Aug 2006 Jane Lambert Barrister
  2. 2. What this Topic is about <ul><li>Conditions of Sale or Service: terms upon which a business offers to supply its goods and services ; </li></ul><ul><li>Conditions of Purchase: terms upon which a business offers to procure goods and services ; </li></ul><ul><li>Others: website, privacy etc </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why it matters <ul><li>Eliminating uncertainty and hence risks and costs </li></ul><ul><li>Compliance with legal and regulatory requirements </li></ul><ul><li>Compliance with voluntary codes of practice </li></ul><ul><li>Enhances suppliers’ reputation </li></ul>
  4. 4. Stage of Business Planning <ul><li>Identify optimal terms of business such as payment, returns, interest and dispute resolution </li></ul><ul><li>Consider likely reaction of customers and suppliers </li></ul><ul><li>Consider applicable legislation, regulation and Codes of Practice </li></ul>
  5. 5. Typical Terms of Business <ul><li>Delivery </li></ul><ul><li>Acceptance </li></ul><ul><li>Payment and Interest </li></ul><ul><li>Retention of Title </li></ul><ul><li>Termination </li></ul><ul><li>Dispute Resolution </li></ul>
  6. 6. Typical Terms of Purchase <ul><li>Right to inspect </li></ul><ul><li>Compliance with specification </li></ul><ul><li>Right to reject </li></ul><ul><li>Refunds for defects </li></ul><ul><li>Termination </li></ul><ul><li>Dispute Resolution </li></ul>
  7. 7. Website Access <ul><li>Distance Selling Regulations: information, written confirmation and right to return </li></ul><ul><li>E-Commerce Regulations: name and address of supplier, regulatory authority etc </li></ul><ul><li>Privacy: Data Protection Act </li></ul><ul><li>Foreign Laws </li></ul>
  8. 8. What not to do <ul><li>Copy other traders’ terms and conditions </li></ul><ul><li>Wait until a problem arises </li></ul><ul><li>Impose unreasonable conditions: may be unlawful and will certainly be unwise </li></ul>
  9. 9. What to do <ul><li>Design terms as early as possible </li></ul><ul><li>Consult insurers, business advisors and trade association to reduce risk </li></ul><ul><li>If possible instruct experienced commercial lawyer (barrister under public access scheme or specialist solicitor) </li></ul>
  10. 10. Any Questions Jane Lambert nipc The Media Centre 7 Northumberland Street Huddersfield HD1 1RL Tel 0870 990 5081 www.nipclaw.com