Consulting Agreements

Written by Kathleen Gagne
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Consulting agreements can be beneficial in a variety of situations. A consultant is any person or company which provides a service for you or your company that is not normally included in any of your job descriptions and is intended to be either short-term or sporadic. You can, for example, hire a consultant to examine your internal record keeping processes with the goal of improvement. Whenever you employ consultants, you should have signed consulting agreements in place.

Specific Consulting Agreements

One of the most important components of consulting agreements is the detail in which the relationship is defined and the clarity with which the terms and nature of the services are delineated. Generally, explaining the services is the most difficult portion of the agreement to write. The clearer these definitions are, the better the recipient of the services will be able to determine how well the consultant has done on the job.

Payment issues are of concern to both the service recipient and the consultant. Many consultants work on a contingency basis. These contingencies may be related to improvements in performance or to sales and profits. If so, the parties should indicate clearly under what kind of schedule the consultant will be paid and exactly what parameters will determine whether the consultant has been successful.

Other Issues Regarding Consulting Agreements

If your potential consultant is required to be licensed in your state, it is the consultant's responsibility to provide proof that he/she is legally licensed. Should the consultant not be licensed and if disagreements arise, the consultant may have no recourse. It is also important that both the service recipient and the consultant agree to have an option to terminate the association should either party become dissatisfied with it.


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