What’s the difference between a waiver and a contract?

by | Sep 6, 2021 | Client Agreement, Disclaimers & Waivers

Happy Labor Day! Hope you are having a good holiday weekend and taking some time off after this busy-as-a-bee summer!

Today’s #minilegallesson is about two types of easily-confused legal documents for covering your buns as a biz owner:

Waivers and Contracts.

The terms often are used interchangeably…but are they actually the same thing?

Nope! They aren’t.

Legal Love™ Tip: Waivers and Contracts are not the same thing.

So, what’s a Waiver… and what’s a Contract?

How do they protect you and your business? And which one should you use – and when?

Both Waivers and Contracts are signed on the dotted line, but the difference is that:

A Waiver, like a “liability waiver”, is a one-sided legal document signed by the client which reduces risk and liability when it comes to fault if an injury or harm occurs. It’s typically only about disclaiming and reducing risk. It doesn’t address payment, cancellation or other program terms.

A Contract, like a “Client Agreement”, is signed by both you and your client to spell out services, expectations, boundaries, and payment in terms of your responsibilities AND your client’s responsibilities. It generally protects your income, time and energy around requests for refunds, calls, cancellations, intellectual property ownership, AND also addresses disclaimers and limitations of liabilities. It’s more comprehensive and gives you legal language to fall back on, for example, if someone doesn’t pay you or drops out of your program halfway through.

Contracts and waivers are so often confused that I created a podcast episode for you about this exact topic so you know WHEN to use each one.

Listen to this previously aired Legally Enlightened Podcast Episode 82 on iTunes HERE or on my website HERE to clear up the confusion so that you can know when to use Waivers and when to use Contracts.

Knowing which type of legal document to use – and when! – will help you protect yourself as you move forward to expand your services, products, and reach.

Here’s to #legalclarity and to not being confused about Waivers and Contracts anymore!