Tailoring a legal document with mode.lawAli Kazim
At mode.law, we can tailor legal documents to meet your specific needs. This collaborative process begins with a consultation, after which you complete a form to generate the initial draft of your document. The lawyer will then amend the document in line with what was discussed during the consultation, before sending it to you for review. Once all reviews are complete, the document will be finalised for use.
In this month’s blog, we spoke with one of mode.law’s recent users that recently used this service, Conrad Tracey. He tells us about his experience of creating a Master Services Agreement and tailoring it for his new business Addiction Coaching Australia. Read on!
How did you hear about mode.law?
I’ve known the Director, Yule Guttenbeil, for a while. I really like him and find him extremely trustworthy. A company I was working for previously had Clearpoint Legal on retainer. As a business, they’re really active in the community and I’d heard they were partnering with mode.law by providing their legal services.
I jumped on board as soon as the mode.law portal was live. It’s exactly what I needed to create documents to get started and launch my business, Addiction Coaching Australia.
Can you tell us more about Addiction Coaching Australia?
It’s a brand-new company that I’m launching 22nd November. Addiction Coaching Australia offers an 8-week blended program that incorporates a mixture of online learning and bespoke high performance coaching to help people break the cycle of addiction and regain control of their life and choices.
Tell us about the process you went through to create the Master Services Agreement.
Each company is different in how they engage with customers, contractors and suppliers. For me, I knew I would be doing things in a particular way and I had an understanding of how I wanted the document to work for my company.
I logged into the online portal and entered my details about the company, such as the ABN and the address and who I am as the owner. That information then was sent onto Yule. We then had a 30-minute conversation on Zoom which was really productive and helpful. I explained about the service I would be offering and how there’s going to be participants paying for it as well as corporate individuals who may purchase it. I discussed how all the different products would work and the different people that I will be working with. Following the conversation, I created a Master Services Agreement in mode.law that Yule then tailored for me. He sent over a draft which I went through with a fine-tooth comb. I showed it to a few other trusted people. We had another 20-minute session to go through the finer details and then he sent me through the final draft.
How did you tailor the document to fit your business’s needs?
In my business, it’s often the case that people will come to me who are having problems with addiction, but they may not be the person who is paying for the service. For example, I might be approached by a 19-year old who is struggling with addiction but it may be their parent or someone in the family that will be paying for the service. So, I had to decide if my agreement is with the person who is taking the course as the participant or is my agreement with the person who is paying for the course and understanding that there are a high level of ethics and privacy that I need to maintain between those two people.
I also knew I wanted to roll my services out to corporate customers by offering employee assistance and coaching and intervention in the corporate world so the agreement had to have a high level of clout I guess and to be very well structured.
When you’re trying to get through to a large corporate company and make it onto their suppliers list, they need to look at the agreement and see that you’re serious and that you know what you’re talking about. If you’ve got all the documentation in place, then that shows you’re worth taking seriously.
How satisfied were you with the process and the final agreement?
I really love the way mode.law built the document and made it bespoke for my business. A lot of the times when you jump onto free sites to get legal documentation, you just find basic templates. So, I think in today’s modern business environment when you’re working across an array of different products or with different customers and participants in my case, it’s so important that your documents are built to service that and protect you, your customers and suppliers from anything that could go wrong.
I was really happy with the turnaround time and the cost. For a business like mine, a Master Service Agreement is one of the major legal documents I would need. Because I’m starting the business on a shoestring, I was concerned that producing the document would set me back a couple of thousands of dollars and that wasn’t the case with mode.law at all.
Yule built the document for me so that I can use it for participants, people who are paying, corporate customers and educational partners. We got it quite broad which is good. I feel it’s going to serve me right up until I’m very well established and then at that point when I have more products and services, we might have to do a little work to it but I feel really comfortable with how detailed and thorough it is.
Have you used any of the other offerings that mode.law provides with the subscription?
Yes! In the course of building my business, I’ve had a couple of people sign the Non-disclosure Agreement which is accessible to me via the portal. Specifically, a coach I’m working with and some people that I’m partnering with.
I will also be utilising the Contractor Service Agreement. I have an agreement with the participant that I’m going to do things with the highest level of integrity and privacy. As I’m working with a nutritionist and a physical trainer who will be helping the participants, it’s important that they deliver the service as I would. So, it’s really important for me to have those partners work under the same agreement that I have with the participants. I not only have an agreement with the participant, but also an agreement with the partners so we’re all under the same understanding that we’re going to run our practices well. It’s a really important documentation.
As soon as something gets outsourced, the quality typically goes out the window, right? So, when I’m outsourcing service providers, I really need them to agree to do things as I would do them and that’s the beauty of the Contractor Agreement.
What advice would you give to other business owners who might think to just copy another company’s legal document?
I’ve founded three companies in the course of the last ten years and I’ve realised there are things you just don’t skimp on. What I’ve seen recently working in a commercial property business during the pandemic, is that they had really great agreements that protected their interests and helped their business and customers. If you didn’t have licence agreements or leases that are custom built and made for your company, you could end up in a really bad predicament. You’ve got to always be prepared for the worse case.
You need to make sure you’re presenting yourself professionally. If you go out in the world with templated, generic documents – it’s quickly apparent. If you go out into the world with documents that are custom built with your wording and branding in them then they feel more personable. Legal documents can be scary. It’s scared me sometimes to have to engage with legal documents but making sure you tailor them to fit the products and services that you sell will protect you from worst-case scenarios.
We couldn’t agree more with that advice. mode.law would like to wish Conrad and his team the best of luck with the launch of Addiction Coaching Australia. To find out more about the programme, visit their website here.
Looking to tailor your own legal document? mode.law offers Australian businesses flexible and tailored legal solutions. You can use our platform to manage all of your business’ legal requirements or to simply access a legal document template here and there. Whether your business is in start-up, still finding its feet or you’re established and thriving, your mode.law subscription remains free until September. Find out more here.