When I offer services, I generally use a contract template that I've used for all of my dealings. This handles payment terms (hourly rate or project rate, payment net 30, etc), deliverable terms, and any legal issues that I'm aware of (such as code ownership, etc).

I've only used this contract in the context of local business (in America).

What considerations do I need to take if I'm writing a contract for someone who is in, say, Australia?

  • 2
    It is careful to add that the law of US pertains, and name the jurisdiction that is most convenient for you. In case of a litigation, you can't afford a trial/resolution abroad.
    – user4521
    Oct 24, 2015 at 13:27

3 Answers 3


Your number one consideration when taking on ANY client should be the risk of not getting paid. You want to make sure that your work product is turned over in very small milestones that need to coincide with the frequency of payments made to you. Don't ever do more work than you can afford to lose if the client doesn't pay you -- a retainer (prepaid) situation is best for you. Working with someone outside your own venue is very, very risky from a revenue standpoint.


I am based in Australia and I use the same terms and conditions for local clients and overseas clients.

One minor difference is that I don't show the goods and services tax on overseas client invoices as the tax only applies to local clients.

I do still charge overseas clients the full amount (as if the tax had been added) as this helps cover the commission on receiving international payments (via PayPal etc).


The most important aspects AFAIK:

  • the law of the contract and jurisdiction in case of disputes
  • tax aspects (e.g. handling VAT especially if you would deliver to EU)
  • transfer of intellectual property (different countries have different copyright laws)

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