A contract that defines the terms of service between a consultant and the clients is known as a Consultancy Agreement. It provides a framework for consultants of all fields of expertise to provide services to clients. Whether the individual offers any service or are in need of any service.

Key ingredients:-

  • Name of the parties

First and foremost, the agreement must specify the name of the parties, i.e., between whom the Consultancy agreement is signed. It specifies the exact business in which the two parties are engaged.

  • Description

The description of the contract details the scope of the project and the purpose of the contract. It generally answers various questions such as what is the work of the consultant that he/she is going to do, what are the requirements of the company with this consultancy work, and what are the problems that are needed to be solved. It also describes which method is used by the consultant when he is going to attend to the company's needs.

  • Schedule

The Schedule element of a consulting contract mentions the project deadline or any timeline which is agreed upon for the completion of the task. It also deals with the repercussions for any late work on the consultant's side. This element also deals with the criteria for the acceptance of the complication and when the project will be considered as completed.

  • Ownership

This element mentions who is the true owner of the final work, the client, or the consultant. Generally, the contract deals with various types of properties such as creative work intellectual property, or copyrights, the contract stated that any work performed is solely owned by the client.

  • Payment

This section generally talks about the payment, the amount of payment, the mode of payment, and if any bonus is to be paid on certain criteria. This section lays down receipt of the work done mentioning the consultant charge, flat-rate consultant fee, hour based fee, day rate, or a fee based on completion of the task.

  • Warranty

This element details any warranties which are given by the consultant to the client regarding the concerned consultant's work such as the client has a certain amount of days to notify the consultant of any errors or problems with work.

  • Confidentiality:-

This clause details the terms of confidentiality the consultant must uphold. This clause typically defines the legal penalties a consultant will face for telling any confidential information about the company. This element plays a vital role in any contract as it lays down the things which the consultant can share with the third party or what are the things which he can’t and if the consultant reveals any confidentiality with he should not tell to third-party then what the repercussions he is going to face are.

  • Cancellation:-

This element talks about the details that what actions are necessary for either the party to cancel the contract and what are the penalties that either of the party is going to face if he or she cancels the contract. It includes information such as the what is the notice requirements, fees for cancellation, and mechanism for canceling the contract.

  • Obligations

Sometimes the party who is employing the consultant may need to provide some sort of services to facilitate the consultation work such as the use of the company’s equipment. This part of the agreement establishes these duties based on the understanding of the parties.

  • Indemnity

This clause lays down the terms & conditions in the case if any party suffers any loss, harm, or any liability because of the other party negligence and prescribes the procedure that what should be done in that case like the former will compensate the latter or anything else which is prescribed in the agreement.

  • Non- Modification

This clause states that no modifications can be made to the existing terms of the service made in the agreement unless they have been made officially and in writing. It helps in ensuring that no party can take unfair advantage.

  • Signature of both parties

In the end, both parties must sign the agreement and mention the date on which it is signed. This completes the document and gives it legal importance. The signature of the parties specifies that both the parties have read and agreed to the terms and conditions of the agreement. So, that latter any party cannot refuse to terms and conditions of the agreement.

Conclusion:-

A Consultancy agreement benefits both the client and the consultant. It covers all the aspects related to the services to be provided within a given period of time, which helps to avoid misunderstandings.

Case:-

  1. Monde Petroleum SA vs. Western Zagros Ltd.

In this case, a dispute arose under a consultancy agreement and was subsequently settled. The consultancy agreement provided for arbitration; the settlement agreement provided for the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts. A dispute arose as to whether one of the parties was induced by misrepresentation to enter into the settlement agreement and as to whether the courts or an arbitral tribunal had jurisdiction to determine the matter.

  • Things that should keep in mind while drafting the Consultancy Agreement are:-
    1. Before signing the agreement every individual should read the entire document thoroughly and understand the meaning of each and every term, so, that no confusion should be there regarding the agreement. The person who is signing the agreement should not trust blindly on other parties. Only after thorough reading and understanding of the whole document the agreement should be signed.
    2. The person signing the agreement must check the contract is correct on all key terms so that both the consultant and the client share the same expectations concerning their commitments and obligations. There should be no room for misunderstandings.
    3. Individual who is signing the contract should sign two copies of the contract so that each can take one and preserve it in their business records.
    4. Never assume certain terms are agreed to unless they are explicitly stated in the agreement. No aspect of the service process should be assumed to exist, and therefore each term should be specified in the agreement.

The employer/employee relationship is based on a combination of contracts that is whether it is written or oral, common law, and statute. The existence of an employment contract is a major factor in determining whether or not an individual is an employee or self-employed. Understanding the employer/employee relationship is vital for the understanding of the duties and an obligation owed by employers and is vital for the maintenance of a stable workforce. The growth of flexible working practices and of regulations governing them makes defining the categories of individuals in paid work vitally important.