Legally Shalini - Client Agreement

How Your Client Agreement Builds Better Relationships

Legally Shalini - Client AgreementShalini recently spoke with Lauren Stratford, Productivity Coach at Seriously Sorted, regarding client agreements and the multitude of benefits.  You can listen here to the podcast, or you may prefer to read the transcript below.

As always, if you need help with your own client agreement, you can contact me for a free chat, or perhaps one of my templates will help you get started.

XX Shalini.

 

SPEAKERS

Lauren , Shalini

 

Lauren  

Hey, everyone, and welcome to Episode 10 of The Seriously Sorted Podcast. Today is a guest episode with Shalini Nandan-Singh from Legally Shalini and we are talking all things client agreements. So Shalini is a lawyer, contract specialist speaker and advocate for women in business. Drawing on more than 15 years experience as a lawyer and a woman in business, Shalini helps Australian service based entrepreneurs protect their business and their bottom lines with imparting legal advice and contracts. And I can attest to that as I am a client of hers as well. We cover so much good stuff. In this episode we talk obviously, what is a client agreement? How to find the right legal professional, what to consider when purchasing legal templates online, the risks and rewards of country deals, and what to do if you do have a legal issue. So without further ado, let’s get into the episode.

 

Lauren  

Hi Shalini and welcome to The Seriously Sorted Podcast.

 

Shalini 

Hey, Lauren, good to be with you.

 

Lauren  

I am so excited to have you on for this week’s episode, we are talking about client agreements. And I guess the spin that I want to put on it is how they can really empower you in your business because I know there’s a lot of potentially fear and avoidance around this topic and around having a client agreement. So I want to talk to you about that today. But firstly, I would love for you to share with our listeners just a little bit about you and how Legally Shalini came to be.

 

Shalini 

Okay, well, I started Legally Shalini I think this is going into the sixth year now, got to stop saying five years last year, and I started the service because I was spending quite a bit of time in groups, where there was a lot of business owners who kind of knew some legal stuff, needed some legal stuff, found the thought of seeing lawyers quite overwhelming, felt their stuff was too small to be dealt with by, you know, the big law firms. So, I just felt that there was an opportunity in there just to help in that phase where business owners were finding their feet. And I think that’s why really, I just started working in that space, so I never really set out to set up Legally Shalini and say, “Hey, I’m going to have this business. And this is what I’m going to do” It evolved. It’s been a very organic service development for me. And I still refer to it as my service. I rarely say that it’s my business. Because I always come at it from the point of view, well, what do you need now? And how do we get you over the next point? Because business is such a trajectory. Unlike other lawyers, I feel that sometimes we need to look at it, where you are now and what you need to do to move on. If you look too far into the future, and none of us are Oracles and we will probably just fall over and never do anything.

 

Lauren  

Yeah. And would you agree that now that you have your own small business, you’re sort of in the shoes of your clients more so than when you’re at perhaps a bigger firm and then that would help you out?

 

Shalini 

Well, I think I, I wanted my, I guess foundational thoughts always was to walk in the shoes of my own clients. My service was a startup, my service was a lean startup. I didn’t have a lot of money when I began the service,  I didn’t have borrowing ability to borrow a lot of money to start Legally Shalini. So, I started on a shoestring and remained on a shoestring you know, for a couple of years before everything became viable and my systems and processes got into place. My marketing got to a point where people understood what I did and then are able to find me when they need me. So very much I’m not coming at it from having already had a big successful law firm setup. I started and struggled, I guess, met the challenges that my clients, all my clients do, including being online because I was online from day one. I knew transition from street front to online or pivoted.

 

Lauren  

Yeah. And speaking of clients, I am one of your clients. So we met, gosh, during all the GDPR fun a couple of years ago when I was like, oh, my goodness, I need the works Shalini, I need a client agreement, I need a privacy policy, I need a terms of use for my website. I don’t know what else a whole bunch of stuff. And at the time, you were a really great resource and you were really quite vocal and championing having these things in place before that deadline, I guess was up so sort of how we first met. And what I loved about your approach, and you as a person was it felt very personable, I suppose when I did a bit of a when I did a bit of a stalk of your website, for example, and was researching, like, how am I going to pick someone to help me with these issues and these documents, and I just felt your approach was just really nice and personable. And now having been the client, the documents that you produce for me, were really, is the term “legalese”? it was free of legal speak. And it was just very clear and concise for the average person to understand. And so, again, when we’re talking about client agreements, and I would love for you to explain without the legalese, what is a client agreement?

 

Shalini 

Thank you for telling me that. I appreciate it. What do I say? What is a client agreement? Look, we look at it this way. I want to tell people, you know, you have to teach your clients how to be your clients. Okay, it comes back to the ideal client, there is no such thing as an ideal client. Yes, there are things you’d like to have about a client. But ultimately, there are things that you do to create that thought in your client, that you are possibly the best person to work with them. And that’s the dance that we do when we’re putting our message out there. And the client agreement is really important because it really helps your client understand how you work, and why you work the way we do and what they need to do in order to get the outcome that they are seeking from you. Yes, you have your things that you need to do your responsibilities that you need to fulfil but the client must also be educated about how you work. So the client agreement in many ways is that document which educates your client about the journey that they’re going on with you. And it covers things that are important to both of you. It covers money, it covers obligations, it covers intellectual property, you know, who owns what. It covers what you can share, what you can’t share, it covers expectations about time, you know, and so really, when I’m drafting, client agreements, you need to have an understanding of how you want to run your business. But I also come back to you from the clients point of view about what’s reasonable, what’s acceptable, what’s lawful. And the ramifications that what you’re asking for in the client agreement. What does that actually mean in terms of your reputation, your dollars coming into your business. You know, your own time management for example. Like, are you really going to be able to deliver that in five days, is 48 hours a reasonable time to expect someone to get something back to. Things like that, or so make it very personal. And that’s the thing that I think is key to remember about client agreements is that they’re very personal to your business. You know, and if you can think of it that way you’ll realize to then it becomes such a blueprint or a quality assurance document for what you’re doing. You’ll always come back to your client agreement, you’ll always refer your client back to it. So if something is not happening the way you want it to happen, or there is a new situation, it needs to be reflected in the client agreement, it’s living record of how your business is run.

 

Lauren  

And I love how you describe that actually at the start that it’s the story or the journey of your relationship with the client, which sounds so much more nurturing, I suppose than this is a legally binding document. So I love the way you describe that. And it does, it really prompts you to think about what you’re going to provide the client as well. It’s not just about protecting you from a mistake the client might make or something like that. It’s also about your commitment to the client as well. And it can be a really reassuring document in my experience, I mean, I’m a details gal. So I like to be able to read through when I’m a client, I guess I’m saying, I like to be able to see that the person I’m working with has actually thought about these things and thought through how long they’re going to get back to me not just how long I’m going to get back to them with draft one or draft two and whatnot. So yeah, I love the way you sort of speak about it as the relationship and the journey that’s really great.

 

Shalini 

I just wanted to say, you know, people, from an organization point of view, if you’re running if you’re a business person setting up a business or running your business very quickly into the business setup journey, you realize how important systems and processes are. It’s like, you just can’t get on top of stuff if you don’t have things in place. So it creeps all over. It starts off with maybe your money situation needing organizing through to your files through to your clients and your CRM and the next thing you know, you need someone to organise your household because you’re so busy, you know. So your client agreement is that document that organizes you in your clients head. You give them this document. Everything they need to know about working with you is in that document. It’s in an organised fashion. They can read, written in a language they can understand about the things that matter to them. It’s really important to your own sense of organization as much as organizing the client to be the best possible client for you. It can be written beautifully and I tell you they should be written about your business and for your business, but they are legally robust, Lauren.  They are in agreement, but they’re written with both parties in mind. They’re not one sided. It depends where you’re working. I work in a marketplace of businesses that are made up mainly of great you know, successful and motivated business women. Who clearly care about what their clients think, and how they want to communicate with their clients. How they want the business to be viewed by their clients and their suppliers. So their branding is embedded, their professional reputation and how people feel about their business is really important. And that is why your client agreement should be representative of what it is you want your clients and your suppliers to feel about your business. Usually you want them to feel organised. You want them to feel secure, you want them to feel reassured that you have gone through and considered aspects of the relationship that both parties need to have on the table and mostly being transparent.

 

Lauren  

Yeah, and I think viewing it as it’s setting you both up for success, rather than protecting you from disaster is probably a good way to go into it. Obviously those things will get covered. But if you go into it with the viewer, this is going to set up a relationship for success, you’re more likely to have a client agreement that is understandable and read and becomes a positive experience. Would you agree?

 

Shalini 

Yes. And you must always invite people to discuss your client agreement with you. It is just that, it’s an agreement and the best improvements to your service comes from those discussions where clients will come back and say, look, I want to discuss it, I’ve read your agreement, I’m concerned about this this or this. That is an opportunity for you to reassess how you’re working. Is it something that does need changing? Is it an indication that maybe the client needs to know more about your service? Is it an indication that they actually need something more than you’re prepared to give, which means do they need referring. You know, it’s a document that helps you navigate the relationship and helps them navigate the relationship with you. This is why when a client agreement is drafted properly, the client, as in the business owner, who has the service agreement, you want to know it inside out, you want to be so intimate with it and so proud of it, and so certain that it can support the relationship and your business. And the only way you’ll know that is that if you kind of had a hand in it. A lot of people feel disconnection from their client agreements. There are a number of reasons for that. It depends. It depends on where you’ve got it from. It depends on whether you know any different to how it can be drafted. It depends on how well you know your own business. These are the things that impact on the quality of the document that you have to represent your business.

 

Lauren  

And I think you’ve touched on another point as well around if you don’t know any different, like how one should look. So how would you suggest someone go about seeking out the right lawyer or solicitor or advice when they are just starting out investigating getting a client agreement?

 

Shalini 

When you’re starting out, there’s a couple of key foundational things that you need to deal with. Legals is one of them. Financials is another one. You’d have to talk to people. You cannot live in a bubble about this. I don’t draft, I don’t even get into any kind of service delivery until I’ve had a chat. That was what I did six years ago when I started. And that is what I do today. A big part of my week is spent having that quick chat with people first, to see if they like me, and whether in fact, I can even help them. I don’t assume that just because I’m a lawyer, and you’ve got a problem that I can help you or that I am the best person to help you. I may be able to help you but it may not be my expertise. So as a business owner who needs to get this stuff done, talk to people, ring up a few people, you will soon find out whether they’re going to work for you or not. Ask your colleagues, do you work with anyone that can help me with this? You know, everyone’s on Facebook now there’s a myriad hundred different business groups. Go in there and saying that they want help with my legals, who can help me. Lots of names will come up, go on their websites have a look. You know, do a search under their name, see what kind of content they deliver, what kind of topics they talk about. Do you feel that they’re addressing aspects of your business? If they are, then they’re the person to talk to you. If you have a family law matter you won’t find me saying one word about that. But if you’ve contacted me as a past client or an existing client, and said, I’ve got this issue, can you help me I will refer you to the best person I know knowing your business and knowing you so again, it comes back to connection.

 

Lauren  

Absolutely, and that’s what I found with you when I was searching for someone, being able to actually have that phone call with you and meet you before engaging in any services, which isn’t something all solicitors do. And I really wanted to have that connection. And I know a lot of creatives would as well, and to have met you and then feel that you genuinely wanted to learn about my business and understand about my business was really key because the other element is it’s not just, you know, wanting to work with you on a client agreement, it’s about wanting someone for my advisory circle, like I think you should be looking for someone who can be part of that circle, you know, a good finance person, a good legal person, a good insurance person. That’s right. So you would want to engage someone because they’re the right person for your inner circle, I would say rather than because I can afford this person, like you know, that they’re the cheapest person or whatever else. So I guess that would be my sort of experience with it, which is why we’ve worked together a number of times now.

 

Lauren  

And in saying that, I’ve just sort of mentioned about service, but also templates, I wanted to chat to you about a lot of solicitors and lawyers now are getting a bit more with the whole online store type thing. And they have services. So probably like consulting services, traditional consulting services to create these agreements, but also templates that people can purchase sort of off the shelf. So you’ve got both of those services. And there’s many other lawyers that do the same and I just wanted to have a chat to you about when is the right, when is it right to choose a template? And when might it be right to choose a consulting and custom service particularly for solopreneurs?

 

Shalini 

Okay, I think the good thing to do is always to check with the person who’s designed the template. Not always possible, I might add. So you’ve got to look at them business that’s created the templates as well. So I’ll talk about my templates because I’ve drafted them. My templates are different because they drafted from the hundreds that I’ve drafted for people who are solopreneurs and who are in the online small business space. Okay, they’re necessarily drafted from that experience that I have. Okay. So my templates will look different from a template drafted by, say, a bigger company that churns them out for a really wide generic audience. Okay. They’ll also be written to cover just about everything, which is also not good for your business. Because the document should contain what is relevant for your client and for you, not what, you know, not a whole lot of stuff that doesn’t need to be there. Templates of generic. So generally when lawyers draft them, they try to put everything into it. The other thing with templates is that sometimes they leave things out that your business has a particular requirement for because of the nature of your business. And I’ll tell you, the kinds of businesses that are in the online space that I move in, which is the solopreneurs, the women who are, you know, reinventing themselves to create services that are really unique, they may not necessarily connect with those templates. They can’t see where to fit their business into it. The key to templates is looking to the business that you’re thinking of buying the templates from. If possible, speak to the creator of the templates. They will be able to tell you after you’ve had a chat with them, whether the templates will be suitable and whether it won’t. So for example, I have a medical disclaimer template on my website, I had a lady call me this morning about whether that template is suitable for her purpose, she’s an energy healer, you know, and her modalities are little bit complex. Now, as a standalone that medical disclaimer, in the absence of all that any other information from her, I would be reluctant to advise her that that is going to cover everything she needs. It won’t. It would be wrong of me to say that, oh, yes, that’ll be fine for you when clearly I have very little knowledge about her business, to be able to actually say, quite possibly you need to have a disclaimer drafted for your particular modality. There are some important questions that need to be covered in that document that I need information from you about. What you’ve got to decide is when you’re starting out or when you’re looking at templates, what are you writing the templates for, right? If it’s a key money making aspect of your business, like something that is asking people to make a high investment that is a lot of money in purchasing something from you, or are they expecting an outcome that could very easily be misinterpreted, or misconstrued? Or, you know, misjudged, then quite possibly you can buy the template, but you will definitely need to have it reviewed. Okay, so you’ve got it as a business owner, make a judgement. Now, you might feel that you can’t make a judgement. That’s when you need to talk to someone, someone that can say to you, okay, what is your business? Which template are you looking at? Okay, that template will work that one will not. I think that that’s really important. I’m not against templates, I sell them myself. But I’m very clear about the difference between a document for a complex service where you want people to understand you, intrinsically. And templates can be used, like some situations, templates can be used. So website Terms of Use, for example, privacy policy, for example.

 

Lauren  

I think the key takeaway for me there is, even if you’re looking at a template, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t still speak to the author of that template. Whereas a lot of the time, you know, just like online shopping, you just find it, you click it, you buy it, and I think this would be one of those times where, regardless of whether which route you want to go down, you should be speaking to the author of that. So I found that really valuable, thank you.

 

Shalini 

You’re welcome, it’s very important. Again, you want to connect with people, you know, if you’re going to buy something from someone, especially something that’s going to impact on your business, try and talk to that person first. If nothing else, I always say to people look, if you are confident in your business, if you are a good writer, if you understand English, then you should be fine with that particular template, right? If you are uncertain about your business processes buy the template, but also get it reviewed by me as it’s my template, you should I have that service. But if you are going to buy just a template and you’ve got all these worries, don’t do that.

 

Lauren  

You just reminded me that another question I was going to ask you, which with a number of creative clients, happens a lot. And that is contra deals. So when one service provider will provide their service to another service provider, and they’ll get that other service in return, if that makes sense. And very typically, there is no agreement in place for those types of deals, I guess you’d say. So I’d love to get you insights on I guess the risks of that in a lot of ways is what I’m probably asking.

 

Shalini 

Contra is a really interesting area. And I’m not against it at all. Because I think that in the world of small business, sometimes contra really helps you get past something you found difficult to do. You know, one hand washes the other kind of thing. And its the brother or the sisterhood of business really. But why I find it falls apart is the value that one party’s giving to the other. So, right at the very beginning, when you are talking about contra, before you accept a contra arrangement where someone says, I’ll do this for you, if you do this to me, there’s a couple of things you need to think about. The first is do you really need that thing that they’re offering to do for you.

 

Lauren  

Yeah, because often it’s a case of one person needs it, so they ask if they can do it that way. And the reciprocal person doesn’t need to do it that way. But they say yes, anyway. Sorry, continue.

 

Shalini 

Yes, and why do they say yes? Because they want to help. There are better ways of helping, for example, working out a proposal and then perhaps giving some kind of payment plan situation, you know, because they clearly want to work with you. But a contra is only going to work if the value is equal. If what you’re offering, and what they need is valued the same. And that rarely happens. So unless it’s a similar service, in which case, you know, make you wonder whether the contra is really going to work. But I know that people engage in contra, but before they engage in contra, they need to really understand the value of what it is that they’re being offered, and its only your value if you need it. And if you don’t need it, then you’ve got to figure out a way to say no. Now, that is something that begs a further conversation around negotiation. But what I saying is, if you say yes to something that you don’t need, then you’ll be the first to be dissatisfied with the agreement no matter what the other person does. If you decide to go ahead with the contra, though, it does need to be put on paper. And it’s not difficult. It is not difficult to agree on a simple document that says, I agree to do this in exchange for this. You know, when people go down the contra situation, depending on the extent of the contra arrangement, they quite often have a chat with me, and they send me what they’ve drafted and I fix it up for them so that they’re both really clear on what they’re doing. You need to decide what the value is and whether you need it. And only if you need it, does it become a valuable, of value to you. Otherwise, it’s just another service.

 

Lauren  

And I find it’s definitely the source of a lot of relationship breakdowns which essentially goes back to what we said at the very start that a client agreement is setting out your relationship journey. And by definition, these contra deals often don’t have what that journey is going to look like because it might be a little bit unbalanced, and one person’s coming from a place of either not being able to say no, or just purely wanting to help, and in saying that they can absolutely work so well. And I have been involved with a couple myself that I was so very happy with. But we had outline what we were going to give each other and made sure that we each had opportunity to openly say whether we were happy with that, that swap, I suppose or not. But yeah, I agree with what you say that it needs to be in writing to some capacity for sure.

 

Shalini 

Having said that too you can’t build your business on contract Whenever possible, budget to pay a fair price for the service that you’re wanting for your business. It’s the only way I think that you will embrace a n attitude towards business that is an empowered one, rather than constantly seeking to avoid that relationship. That is what business is about. It’s about the fair exchange of services. And I’ve done you know, in most of my work, even though the guts of it is drafting, it’s counselling, those that I’m drafting for to, you know, think in those terms that your business you cannot get through the life of your business on contra. You cannot get through the life of your business expecting a discount. Of course, you can obtain them if you’re in the right place at the right time, and nothing should ever stop you from asking. But you must understand that that’s exactly the situation that you want to avoid for your business, which is people constantly asking for contra or asking for a discount. They’re devaluing your business. Because all that comes back to your contract.

 

Shalini 

I guess my superpower is that I can work with all of that I see all of that when I draft. I think the important thing about contra and about discounting, the next step down from discounting is contra, to be very sure of your value, whether what you are getting is what you need. And if you do go down that path, if you don’t have it in writing, and it does go pear shaped, then you have no one to blame but yourself. And it’s really difficult. It’s, well, it’s a learning thing. As you get more experienced in business, you realize what needs to be in writing and what doesn’t need to get in writing. And if it has a financial impact on your business, and usually does if it impacts on time or output or your bottom line, then you should have a written agreement. Because that way, you know, you can refer to that and deflect, you can say, look, we had an agreement about this. It’s in writing, can we talk about that as opposed to making it personal.

 

Lauren  

Yeah and Conflict Management again, it’s a whole other topic, I suppose. And having those difficult conversations?

 

Shalini 

Well, my business is about managing difficult conversations and all these agreements are in there to help you to manage them because they will arise. It’s like your children will say embarrassing things. Right? It’s a fact of life. It’ll happen.

 

Lauren  

Yeah. And I think if we come at it from like, I guess what I’m hoping to do is having this discussion will encourage people to go on the front foot and come to someone like yourself, when it is an empowering activity to do so. And we’re starting from the start when we haven’t needed it yet. And we can really think about this in a really positive way. What we don’t want, I’m assuming is for someone to come to you without one when they really need one, which is when it kind of all goes pear shaped.

 

Shalini 

Well, very often people do come to me without any, you know, with a conflict without any documentation in place. No judgement. Because I don’t know why they don’t have it. It could be any number of reasons. I’m very happy that they have presented themselves when they do, because it’s an indication that it’s time for them to get things sorted out. And I always say to business owners, or to my clients, have you spoken to the other party. Now, this is really important because it’s such a key skill, conversation. It’s so important that you have that ability to speak to the other party and say, listen, we have this issue, can we talk about it. And then go from there, you’ll save yourself a lot of legal fees, I can tell you, and sometimes what happens is a client will talk to me and I will literally coach them about what to have in that conversation There is a possibility you can resolve this and go back and have this conversation if they haven’t already.

 

Lauren  

And I think that’s a really good point as well in that people shouldn’t be afraid to seek the advice and feel that they might get scolded for not having something to begin with, because there’s still plenty of opportunity to help that person out of that situation like you say, like you’ve got, there’s opportunities to help coach them through the scenario before you have to go down the legal path and things like that. So it’s, it’s not like to not be afraid to seek the help when you need it. Even if you haven’t, you know, got the agreement, for example, in place prior to that.

 

Shalini 

Look, I operate on the basis that it’s a human condition. My household is not perfect. My desk is not very tidy. I don’t know if all my bills are paid, they are but you know, you know, there is, there is a level of knowledge and organization and awareness that, quite frankly, is arbitrary for everybody. Some people are better at it than others. Then there is that human condition of oversight. Sometimes we just get so busy we overlook things. We overlook paying our rego or our electricity bills. So when someone comes to me and it’s because they haven’t done something that’s my way of coming at it is it happens. So what do we do now? You know, let’s see what we can do to level the playing field again. But it’s also an indication to me at the time that probably there’s some skills might be lacking that need addressing. And they normally just some things that they need reminding of, that you know, you do know you can pick up the phone and speak to that person say this. Sometimes they just need a bit of mentoring because business is a lonely business. There’s a lot of people around you, but actually what’s going on in your head is quite isolating. So they need to talk to someone and say, look, I could have done this, I should have done this, but I didn’t what can I do now and to speak to someone without any judgement around it and assess different possibilities. The thing you have to remember is that ultimately, it’s your responsibility to ask for the help you need, you know. Somebody somewhere will be able to answer your question or address your requirement. And as a business owner, the ability to ask for that help is something you have to craft There is somehow this assumption that we know everything when we don’t. And, you know, six years down, I’m still learning and I don’t expect any different from my clients. It’s always important to ask that question that you need an answer to. If you know something is wrong and you don’t really know what you want to do with it, then talk to someone who’s in the traffic. You know, like an accountant knows a lot of stuff. A lawyer knows a lot of stuff. They may not be the person for you, but a chat with them is always like, yeah, look, I think you need to speak to this person now that I’ve heard you what’s going on.

 

Lauren  

Yes, speak to someone in that advisory circle.

 

Shalini 

Yes, we are in that crossroads of many things happening, you know, lots of things cross over when we are doing our work. So we always have this thing, oh I know someone that can help, or I think you should talk to this other person. And that is really a powerful thing. And as business owners, you know, when you make all the connections, you’re making the connection so you can be of help to other people.

 

Lauren  

I feel like this is the underlying message of this whole episode, which for me started out quite logistically around what is the client agreement, what should it include, but the message is so much about relationship building with your clients, with your I’m going to say your advisory circle, your solicitor and your accountant, and it’s about speaking up when you need the help. And really, some of these documents are just the output of having these robust relationships sort of grow. Would you agree?

 

Shalini 

Absolutely. Absolutely. They allow you to do business the way you want to do business. And one thing I would like to say about client agreements is, you know, they’re yours, it’s up to you how you if you want to enforce it, if you want to set it aside, if you want to make a variation to accommodate a client, if you want to, you know, if it needs reviewing. It’s a document that moves with the times with your business, it grows with you, it contracts with you. If you contract your services, you need to show that in your document, you expand your services, you need to address it. But ultimately, if someone comes along and what they’re asking you is beyond the scope of your agreement, if you want to expand the scope, you can, if you want to not expand the scope, and enforce the scope you can. It’s the same with pricing. So it is your document, you know, you need to understand that it has to be given the respect it deserves, is what I’m saying. You can’t relegate it. If you are going to rely on a template for it. Make sure you do some serious work on that template and have it reviewed. My recommendation is always to have your terms drafted by somebody else who has an outsider’s view, as much as picking your business apart, they will walk in your shoes and make sure they walk in your clients shoes as well. Because you want a document that shows that you care about the client. You want to document that shows that you’ve thought about what’s fair and what’s not. You want a document that shows that it’s legally robust and that it’s read. It’s a document that can be understood. So these are the things that you know, if you’re feeling overwhelmed with the thought, oh, I need a service agreement, I need a contract whatever, as your business grows and you start making money, it’s going to be protecting that money you make.

 

Lauren  

Amazing. I’ve got so much to think about myself. And I think I need to book in with you to get my client agreement updated, to be honest now. Shalini, thank you so much for your time today. I really appreciate it. Could you just let everybody know where they can find you online if they want to get in contact?

 

Shalini 

It’s very easy. I have a website, legally shalini.com.au. I’m also by the same name on Facebook and Instagram. I don’t know how I get across all of those things. But I think deep down you know, before I became a lawyer, I think you know this Lauren, I was a journo. So I kind of like have always been interested in you know, how people show up.

 

Lauren  

Well, thank you so much for today. We all really appreciate it. Thanks Shalini.

 

Shalini 

You are welcome.

 

Lauren  

What a great episode, I learnt something. I hope you did too. I definitely encourage you to seek some legal advice if that’s what you need right now. And the episode show notes will be available at seriouslysorted.com.au/10. Thanks, guys.

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