Does Your Website Need Terms and Conditions?

July 20, 2021

Let’s be real for a moment, shall we? Website Terms and Conditions: do you actually read them? For most of us I am guessing the answer is no most of the time. But the reality for small business owners is that we should still have them on our websites (and we probably should read them, too!). While there is no legal requirement to have them, there are many good reasons to have them regardless of that.

Also called Terms of Use or Terms of Service, website Terms and Conditions create a contract between you and your customer. This can limit your liability if you are taken to court. It also protects your rights to your website and its content. 

While Terms and Conditions are not one size fits all, there are several elements that most if not all contain: a basic disclaimer limiting liability, copyright information, and location of operation. The last one is important as it sets out the governing law for your website. Those are just the basic elements, your Terms and Conditions should be unique and tailored for your business.

Once you have your Terms and Conditions written, you will need to decide what form they will take. We’ve all encountered the clickwrap variety, where you must first view and agree before proceeding to the site. The other option is browsewrap, where your Terms and Conditions are viewable on a separate page by clicking on a link. I know we all prefer the second option when browsing, but the first provides better liability protection.

Which is a better fit for you? I can help you figure that out! I can also help you draft Terms and Conditions that meet the specific needs of your business. If you already have Terms and Conditions in place but haven’t reviewed them in a long time, it might be time to do that as well. Your website is likely ever-changing, and your Terms and Conditions may need to change along with that. Whatever your needs are, I am here to help! 

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMERS:
1. The information above does not constitute legal advice, nor does it create an attorney-client relationship. Please consult your attorney with specific questions.
2. As this situation is constantly changing, we will make every effort to stay current on this topic, however this information is provided as general guidance and may not apply to your situation, nor should it be relied upon exclusively. Please consult and confirm with your attorney if you have questions about these updates or their applicability.  
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