The Freelance Contract: a revolution in freelancers’ rights
Just about any freelancer knows the pain of running after clients for payments due. It is possibly the biggest struggle an outsourced worker across the world has to deal with, and it’s been a thorn in the global community’s side for decades.
Fortunately, all that is likely to change in a major way thanks to a new tool launched by And.co and the Freelancers Union. Now the external workforce can quickly, easily, and efficiently draft a standard contract on the spot for any client, regardless of location, job criteria, or specialty. What is this tool is all about? How are freelancers already benefiting from the innovation? And how does this translate to faster, easier paychecks?
A closer look at the movement that’s changing everything
Freelancing has grown over the past few years. This niche makes up more than a third of the work force in the US, an astounding £21 billion are generated annually from freelancers in the UK, and the Netherlands has reported a 92% growth in freelancing over the last 10 years. So it’s no wonder that freelancers’ rights have become a hot topic everywhere.
The Freelance Contract is a response to the Freelance Isn’t Free Act that was passed in October of 2016 in NYC. The purpose of the act is to protect freelancers under the law and hold clients accountable for late payments, unlawful requests and exploitation of the freelancer in various ways. With nearly 40% of the New York City workforce working freelance, this act offers some protection to this sizeable population of professionals. By creating the free, openly available contract, And.co simply continued the fight for freelancers everywhere. They have a great motto: “Being independent doesn’t mean you have to work alone.” This is the reality when you are an on-demand laborer: traveling the outsourcing world solo can get pretty rocky. And.co has other helpful tools for freelancers like an insurance guide and a quarterly tax calculator.
Known appropriately as The Freelance Contract, this new tool drafts contracts that ensure there are no misunderstandings or unrealistic expectations because of words unspoken. Most freelancers know the pain of having to redo work because of a miscommunication or not getting paid because of a mix up in the wording of an assignment. This contract-maker safeguards external workers from mishaps that come from unclear terms and conditions.
Benefits and neat features
The tool is pretty amazing:
- It’s free!
- Independent workers can customize their contracts to fit their niches, clients, or projects.
- The tool has sections that can be tailored to safeguard freelancers from getting cheated out of payments.
- Some available sections include one on late fees that clearly spells out the penalties for not paying on time, as well as one about intellectual property ownership rights, maintaining that freelancers’ work is their own property (at least until they’ve been sufficiently paid for it).
- The Freelance Contract can be used via computer or mobile app.
Of course, the Freelance Contract isn’t meant to harm clients; it’s intended to build better relationships between the employee and the employer. By keeping everything clear and straightforward, there is no resentment, confusion, or lag, so everyone feels more respected. The client gets their work faster and done properly the first time around, and the outsourced employee gets a straightforward assignment and payments on time.
Major victory for freelancers, everywhere
The Freelance isn’t Free Act was a real victory for freelancers. Today, the Freelance Contract is another huge step forward legislatively that gives independent workers even more power and security. It wasn’t long ago that fighting late payments was a major battle many freelancers lost. While keeping lines of communication open and filtering clients can lower the chances of dealing with this issue, late or omitted payments is still something freelancers struggle with. With the help of the Freelance Contract, outsourced employees finally have a legal lifeline they can tap into.
Since getting cheated out of rightful payment is a universally-understood frustration, the Freelance Contract is great news for the international freelance community as a whole. While the Freelance Isn’t Free Act was passed in New York, this tool can be used by any freelancer across the globe. That makes approximately 1.4 million freelancers in the UK, 21% of Italian workers across the country, 13% of Spanish and Slovakian employees, and millions of others around the world very happy.
In fact, there’s an astounding 8.9 million freelancers within the European Union and 15 million in India; that number climbs by leaps and bounds every year. Yes, outsourced employees around the world are celebrating this revolution on their own soil.