A graphic design contract is important to protect an art creator’s work and the client’s investment. However, most people are not aware of what should be included in a graphic design contract.

Here you can check all ins and outs of graphic design contracts at CocoSign. You can also find downloadable design contract templates including web design contract here, which are tailored to meet your needs.

Part 1: What is a Graphic Design Contract?

A graphic design contract is a legally binding document created between a graphic designer and the client commissioning the work. In simple terms, a graphic design contract describes how the business should proceed between these two parties.

A graphic design contract makes sure that the graphic designer’s work will not be used for any wrongful purposes. Further, it also ensures that the client is getting what he or she is paying for.

Part 2: When is a Graphic Design Contract Needed?

A graphic design contract is required whenever a client is hiring a graphic designer to create a logo, infographic, website image, or any other task that requires the skills of the graphic designer.

There are cases where a client asks for revisions to a graphic designer’s work, which is considered out of scope by a graphic designer. This can lead to a conflict which can harm the rights and interests of either or both parties.

A graphic design contract avoids such conflicts by mentioning the outline of the work clearly.

It also gives the client an understanding of what they can expect, such as the timeline for the work to be completed and the inclusions and exclusions to the work.

For the graphic designer, it ensures peace of mind that his or her services will be paid on time. There are instances where the clients take very long to review a work, which leads to long waiting periods in payments.

A graphic design contract puts on paper the schedule of payments and the time limits on the review process.

Additionally, it also describes who owns the work once it has been completed and to what extent. For example, if the graphic designer is giving the client permission to use the softcopy of the work without printing it, that can be mentioned on the contract.

Part 3: What should be included in a Graphic Design Contract?

While the graphic designer and the client are free to add any terms both parties have agreed to, the components of a graphic design contract commonly include the following things:

Statement of Work (SOW):

Statement of Work defines the work that the graphic designer will do for the client. It should clearly outline the work that is in the scope of the project, and the work that is out of its scope.

Payment Details:

Payment details should include the compensation that the client will pay for the work commissioned. It should also include the schedule of the payment as well as the advance deposits if any.

Changes and Revisions:

The graphic design contract should mention what changes are included in the project price. It should also mention the revision cycles that the clients can expect. Further, there should be a clause stating that if the clients run out of these revision cycles, they have to pay the graphic designer for any further revisions.

Client Responsibilities:

The client responsibilities include the material that the client needs to provide to the graphic designer for the successful completion of the project.

Client Contact:

The graphic design contract should state the main contact on the client’s end. If there is no designation of the main contact, too many people could end up giving their reviews on the graphic designer’s work, which can spoil the project.

Client Approval:

The client approval clause should outline the time limit assigned to the client to evaluate the work once it has been completed and request any changes if needed.

Cancellation before Completion:

It is important to define what happens if the client cancels the commission before it is completed, as well as the cancellation charges if there are any.

Warranty of Originality:

Warranty of originality is a claim made by the graphic designer that all the work being performed is authentic and original. This protects the client from any copyright law infringement from other parties.

Indemnification/ Limitation on Liability:

Limitation on liability states that the graphic designer cannot be accounted responsible for monetary damages which exceed the amount that the graphic designer was paid for the job.

Based on the requirements of the graphic designer and the client, both parties can modify or add other components as well. However, the essence of the contract is that both the parties are agreeing to the clauses mentioned within.

Get a Copy of Our Graphic Design Contract Now!

Whether you are a full-time graphic designer or are operating a side business, keeping everything legally compliant is a must-have. Download our standardized and reliable graphic design contract template to avoid missing out on essential details in the contract.

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Part 4: How to Create a Graphic Design Contract?

To make sure that the graphic design contracts are legally binding and can hold in a court of law, they have to be written well and valid from a legal perspective.

Hiring a lawyer can be expensive and not really necessary when you can download a graphic design contract template from CocoSign.

CocoSign provides you with contract agreement templates based on what you need. If you need to create a graphic design contract, with clauses tailorable to your needs and requirements, check out the graphic design contract templates offered by CocoSign and download the one that you find suitable.


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