Essential Startup Contract Templates for New Businesses

Essential Startup Contract Templates for New Businesses

Starting a new business is an exciting adventure, but it also involves considerable planning and preparation. One of the critical aspects of setting up a new business is negotiating and drafting various contracts and legal agreements that protect your interests, structure partnerships, and mitigate potential risks.

In this article, we will highlight some essential contract templates that every new business should have.

1. Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA)

An NDA is a legal agreement that restricts the disclosure of confidential information shared during your business transactions with partners, employees, and contractors. Having an NDA in place protects your trade secrets and proprietary information from being used by competitors or unauthorized parties.

2. Partnership Agreement

If you decide to partner with someone to start your business, you must draft a partnership agreement. This agreement provides an outline of the rights, responsibilities, decision-making authority, and ownership structure of each partner. It’s essential to have this agreement in place before you start your business, or you risk confusion or even legal disputes in the future.

3. Employment Contract

An employment contract outlines the rights and responsibilities of your employees. It’s crucial to ensure that your employees understand their job description, salary structure, performance expectations, confidentiality requirements, and other essential work details. This contract provides legal protections for both you and your employees, and should be well drafted with a lawyer’s assistance.

4. Independent Contractor Agreement

If you plan to use independent contractors for your business, you will need an independent contractor agreement. This contract outlines the scope of work, payment details, and other crucial details related to the services they will provide. By having a written contract in place, you can ensure that you protect yourself against potential legal issues in the future.

5. Terms of Service & Privacy Policy

In today’s world, online businesses must have a Terms of Service (TOS) and Privacy Policy. The Terms of Service outlines the rules and guidelines for the use of your website or mobile app, while a Privacy Policy outlines how user data is collected, used, and protected. These agreements should be drafted in consultation with legal counsel to ensure that they comply with all relevant laws and regulations.

6. Client Agreement

If your business provides services to clients, you will need to draft a client agreement. This agreement outlines the services you will provide, the payment structure, and any other relevant details about the business relationship. Having a client agreement in place can help mitigate potential disputes with clients and protect your business interests.


In conclusion, starting a new business requires careful planning and attention to detail. Having the right contracts and agreements in place can help protect your business interests, mitigate potential disputes, and ensure that your business operates legally and ethically. While it’s tempting to try to draft these contracts yourself, it’s always best to consult with legal counsel to ensure that your contracts are legally binding and provide the necessary legal protections. With these essential contracts in place, you can start your business with the peace of mind that you’ve taken the necessary legal steps to protect your business’s future.