When it comes to writing up legal documents in the US, if you don’t have much experience with the process in general (i.e. familiarity with formatting, or even knowledge of what documents you need to be submitting) you could find yourself in trouble. Unless you’re an attorney and you can trust your own skills to get all the legal documentation prepared, written up, and compiled correctly, from contracts to the necessary policies, it’s often best to leave it to someone with more expertise in this field.
However, not everyone will have the opportunity to hire an expert that can do all of this for an affordable price. Fortunately for you, we’ve got a list of 10 free, common legal documents that you could use after establishing your business with Workhy. In most cases, all you’ll need to do is download them and fill them out before sending them off.
Top 10 legal documents you could use for your business in the US
1. Independent Contractor Agreement
An Independent Contractor Agreement is a contract that details the terms of an arrangement between a client and contractor. This will include a variety of elements, from the length of the project to payment details, so it’s often a necessity for any businesses that are providing a service.
2. Employee Offer Letter
Typically, these are formal letters that need to be sent out to anyone who is being offered employment. They will need to include any basic information about the position, such as start date, salary, etc., as well as confirmation that the candidate is being selected for the job by the employer.
3. Employee Agreement
While not necessary for all businesses, an employee agreement will outline any obligations or expectations for the position as it is accepted, which will often help to prevent any employee/employer disputes later on down the line.
5. Service, Sales, and Consultant Agreement
These agreements are essential between clients and self-employed consultants. These are fundamental in outlining the details of an array of factors, such as compensation, the period where the documentation is valid, and the services that will be provided. This should also detail the consultant’s status and responsibilities, as well as their liabilities too.
6. Non-Disclosure Agreement
It’s safe to say that most businesses will have information that needs to be kept confidential, like financial records for example, and a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is usually the ideal legal document to ensure privacy. Even if you don’t think there’s anything that needs to remain exclusive, it’s often worth getting regardless.
7. Release of Liability
Also known as a Waiver of Liability, or Exemption of Liability, these legal documents are agreements where the releaser signs the waiver. In doing so, they are legally accepting that they will be responsible should any potential damage or injuries occur.
8. Operating agreement for LLCs
Operating agreements are usually a good idea for any LLC, even if these are not required in every state. These outline the financial and functional decisions of an LLC (and become more important when multiple members are involved).
9. Memorandum of understanding
Often abbreviated to MOU, a Memorandum of Understanding details any important conversations that you have with those who are involved with your business. They can be vital in laying out terms without relying on more complex legally binding documentation.
10. Meeting minutes
In most states, corporations will need to document their important meetings in written format. While similar to the MOU above, these detail what was said and done by all parties during any given meeting, and are an official account of events.
Anyone who’s looking to start a business in the United States but isn’t quite sure how to go about doing so, may want to consider how a team of experts like those at Workhy may be able to help. With years of experience in the industry, you can rely on Workhy to assist you with all your business needs when starting up; from legal documentation to a host of other services.