Your Contract When Hiring A Virtual Assistant
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Your Contract When Hiring A Virtual Assistant

Now that you’re getting close to hiring a virtual assistant, you have to consider the legalities around hiring a virtual assistant. Most importantly, you’ll need your contract, W-9, and any other papers your company wants your virtual assistant to sign. In today’s blog post, we’ll go over the importance of each document.

General Contract

General Contract

You can incorporate everything, including the non-compete and the nondisclosure agreements, into your general contract, though some businesses decide to keep them separate.

Before drafting up your legal contract with your virtual assistant, be sure to differentiate between whether your VA is an employee or an independent contractor. This post will cover hiring an independent contractor.

Your general contract should include the following:

Rates

The rates include how much and how often you are paying your virtual assistant.For example, your virtual assistant might charge you a monthly flat rate or they might ask you to pay per hour. This needs to be covered in your contract so there’s no confusion about what the payment plan will be.

You also need to discuss how payment will work with your virtual assistant. Will you be paying for everything in advance? Will you be paying at the end of every week depending on how much work is done? Have this conversation with your virtual assistant prior to hiring so you can both come to a comfortable agreement on how payment will work.

Note that some virtual assistants take full payment in advance because they’ve worked with clients who have received work and then left the VA high and dry. Usually, these virtual assistants have a website and a reputable background so you don’t have to worry about them running off with your money.

Non-solicitation

One of the worst things that can happen is when your virtual assistant, who knows the ins and outs of your business, emails your clients soliciting them for work. Solicitation is a poor reflection of your business and creates an uncomfortable environment for everyone involved. Put down a non-solicitation agreement in your contract to ensure that your virtual assistant isn’t going to try to contact your clients.

One of the worst things that can happen is when your virtual assistant, who knows the ins and outs of your business, emails your clients soliciting them for work. Solicitation is a poor reflection of your business and creates an uncomfortable environment for everyone involved. Put down a non-solicitation agreement in your contract to ensure that your virtual assistant isn’t going to try to contact your clients.

Non-compete

Hand in hand with the non-solicitation is an agreement to not compete with your business. Your virtual assistant is someone who is extremely familiar with the details of your business. You don’t want them to take your trade secrets and create a competing business.

While you can draft a non-compete, it’s not reasonable for you to say that they can never compete with your business. After all, they are gaining experience that can help them grow as a business owner. Your non-compete may say that it lasts 5-7 years, but usually it doesn’t last longer than that.

Non-disclosure

Some virtual assistants work with several business owners. Having a non-disclosure in place makes sure that your virtual assistant isn’t sharing your secrets with other business owners. For example, if you discuss a business idea with your virtual assistant, you don’t want them selling that idea to a competitor.

You might also sell courses, digital products, or infoproducts. Your nondisclosure prevents your virtual assistant from telling others what’s inside your paid products, especially if they’ve seen the product themselves.

Work Expectations

Virtual assistants are rarely working on your business full-time unless you’re paying them full-time wages. They’ll usually spend a few hours on your business per week and then supplement their income with other methods. However, you’re still entitled to have expectations about how many hours they’ll be working and what days.

This should include whether you expect your virtual assistant to work federal holidays or weekends.

Deliverability is also important to note. How long will it take your virtual assistant to perform the tasks that you need completed? How many days should the turnaround time be?

Termination

As uncomfortable as it is to have to fire someone, sometimes you may need to part ways with the virtual assistant. Sometimes, it’s because the virtual assistant has been lagging behind but sometimes your business no longer needs their services.

Your contract should state what terms you’re allowed to terminate the contract on and who gets to terminate the contract. You should also state how much notice in advance will be given and what happens to all payments. Will payments be forfeited? Will there be a refund?

Having a contract with your virtual assistant helps set boundaries for the relationship. It also sets the expectation between the business and the virtual assistant.

Struggling to come up with your contract? Download our template below!

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