Working with Sub-Contractors: 4 Key Elements to Include in Your Contract

Many entrepreneurs decide to sub-contract their work (or part of it) in order to lighten their workload or simply be more efficient. Unfortunately, very few of them decide to put these relationships into writing, and when they do, they often forget crucial aspects in their agreements. If you’d like to work with sub-contractors, here are 4 elements you should be including in your contract.

Of course, please take this as legal information and not legal advice. If you have any questions regarding sub-contractor agreements or if you need to get one drafted or reviewed, send me an email at


#1 Provided material

One of the first things you need to determine is whether or not the necessary material to accomplish the work will be provided. You should also list this material in the contract. This is particularly necessary in product-based industries like fashion. For instance, if you plan on sub-contracting sewing work and will only be providing fabric, this is something you need to precise in your agreement.


#2 Intellectual property

This is the part people often forget about. Keep in mind that when a client hires you to create something and your sub-contract some of the work, a transfer of intellectual property needs to happen in order for you to be able to properly fulfill your mandate. Make sure you include an intellectual property clause that transfers the rights to you. You also want to make sure the subcontractor can’t claim moral rights. Not doing so can prevent you from making modifications to the created work down the line.


#3 Deadlines

Considering the fact that someone hired you to deliver certain products or services, you most likely have deadlines to respect. These deadlines need to be taken into consideration when dealing with a sub-contractor. The best way to prevent any issues is to also include deadlines in your agreement with your sub-contractor to ensure you can receive the work in time for your own delivery requirements.


#4 Liability

Sometimes, things go wrong and it’s not necessarily your fault. The last thing you want is to be in trouble with your client for something you could not control. In order to protect yourself, you should include in your contract with your sub-contractor clauses that will allow the other party to take responsibility for their actions and compensate you for their negligence when necessary.


Got additional legal questions you would like to ask me regarding sub-contractor agreements? Do you need to get a contract drafted or reviewed? If so, do not hesitate to send me an email at or click on the link below to schedule a consultation.

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