5 Legal Pages Your Business Website Should Have

When it comes to running a business, contracts are part and parcel of commercial relationships. They can be complex and exist for many different uses, so it’s imperative you fully understand the terms of a contract and any applicable laws before offering one or signing anything. Contracts are legal documents and on a website, they can be referred to as “legal pages.”

In this technological day and age, most businesses have an online website. If you want to protect your business online, reduce your liability and make sure your website is legally compliant (dependent on your business type) here are some legal pages you should consider having:

At a minimum, it’s recommended to have;

➕ A Privacy Policy

➕ Terms & Conditions/Terms of Use

➕ Legal Disclaimer

And it doesn’t hurt to add;

➕ A well defined Refund Policy (even though this is usually covered in Terms & Conditions) and

A Copyright Notice as a reminder to users that your work is copyrighted (again, protection of your IP can be covered in Terms of Use and/or your Terms & Conditions)

PRIVACY POLICY

A privacy policy is a statement about how you manage someone’s personal information during the course of interacting with them.

This will mostly be your customers, but it may also include other people such as prospective customers or people who subscribe to your newsletter or other advertising material.

A privacy policy outlines how you collect, hold and use personal information.

Many businesses are required by Australian privacy law to have a privacy policy. If you’re unsure whether your business needs to have a privacy policy, check out the OAIC’s website here.

TERMS OF USE/ TERMS & CONDITIONS

Terms of Use are for customers visiting your website. It helps to protect you and your business from potential liabilities and outlines the rules users must follow when using your website. Ideally, a website Terms of Use does the following:

  • Limits your liability should someone incur a loss while using your website (for example, from viruses).

  • Protects intellectual property on your website (such as copyright in images and text).

  • Removes your responsibility for any links you share to third-party websites.

  • Gives you a general right to seek damages (i.e. compensation) from someone if you incur loss due to that person’s misuse of your website (for example, from hacking).

If you supply or use the services of a business then it’s important to put the terms of your arrangement in writing.

Terms and conditions set out matters such as the terms of payment, ownership of intellectual property, the limitations of your liability, and steps the parties must take in the event of a dispute. While your Terms and Conditions do not need to be signed by your customers, it is still necessary for your customers to accept them just like any other contract.

Remember that businesses have obligations under Australian Consumer Law when it comes to certain guarantees you’re required to give to consumers.

Terms of Use and Terms & Conditions are often used interchangeably but they are slightly different legal documents. It is possible to combine Terms of Use and/or Terms and Conditions into one document if applicable.

LEGAL DISCLAIMER

A disclaimer is intended to protect you and limit your liability for the outcome of the use of your site. It depends on your business but a disclaimer should clarify that the content on your site is not professional advice or guidance and shouldn’t be relied upon as such. This can be included in a Terms of Use or Terms and Conditions document.

REFUND POLICY

Usually your Terms and Conditions will cover your Refund Policy but it doesn’t hurt to have this highlighted separately. A clearly defined Refund Policy can help minimise issues with customers. All Refund Policies must comply with Australian Consumer Law.

COPYRIGHT NOTICE

A Copyright Notice is not required by law but this can be useful to remind website visitors that your content is Copyrighted and they do not have a right to use it without permission. A Copyright Notice should contain the copyright symbol (©️), the year the content was created and the name of the copyright holder.

So how can we help you? We have an online store with Contract Templates that are simple and straight forward to use for your business. Suitable for most business types and easily editable to add your details, your website can be legally compliant within a few clicks.

Check out our Terms of Use contract template here and our Privacy Policy here. We also have a suite of contract templates to suit creatives including Terms of Trade, Licence Agreement and Supplier Terms of Engagement.

Head to our online store here.

If you need further assistance legal proofing your business, contact our friendly team on hello@littonlegal.com.au