Basically, a service provider is a company that provides a service to another company / business. As opposed to other businesses who sell goods for money, a service provider exchanges service for money / remuneration. What a service provider exchanges for remuneration is not tangible and it involves a whole lot of Intellectual Property as it takes a lot of brain storming, research, ideas, time, mental energy and skill to create something that suits the client’s issues.

So in our 21st Century, a service provider may be a logo designer, brand strategist, lawyer, Doctor, Content developer, Website creators, fashion designers and illustrators etc.

In my journey in the legal profession, I have come to realize that service providers suffer a lot in business as clients may decide to opt out of “gentleman’s agreement” or agreement by word of mouth whenever they please or at other times, refuse to pay them as at when due.

I always advise, that every service provider should have a written agreement, that is executed. By executed, I mean, signed and dated. Or at least charge a non refundable inconvenience fee at the on-set in case your client decides to change their mind as you would have spent time, energy, mental ideas even though you are yet to conclude the project especially if you are unable to get a lawyer to draft a proper agreement immediately.

If you are able to get a lawyer to draft a template agreement for you, you can add a clause in the contract that explains if you have spent some time working and the client decides to change the terms of the contract or walk away entirely, you will be entitled to some percentage of the total sum.

Also, do not forget to add a payment plan timing that makes it compulsory for your client to pay at a specific time especially if he paid some percentage before you commenced and he is to pay the rest after you finish.

Try your best not to release the project to him when you finish. Fix a meeting to show him your finished work, then transfer possession after payment.

Be smart.

Do not forget to get a good lawyer to draft an Contract/Agreement that protects you. #Whoisyourlawyer

Nneka Nwagu
About Nneka Nwagu:

Nwagu Nneka Uloaku is a multipotentialite lawyer by day, a thinker and writer in between and a woman of many mastered parts. She calls herself a 21St century lawyer, as she hopes and is working to meet the 21St century legal needs of the world. You can find her unconventional articles on her medium account medium.com/@nwagunneka

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