In the Internet age, a website is one of the best ways to market your brand. Some business owners aren’t aware that websites can be subject to liability. We’ll explain why this is so and how to protect your site from legal trouble.
Think about it this way: If YouTube had no terms and conditions, YouTubers would have free reign over the content they upload, including violent, sexual, and other explicit material. YouTube then could be held liable for any law violations (i.e. child pornography upload) by the users.
A “terms and conditions” agreement is a contract between the Webmaster (you) and site visitors. It outlines the rules the users must abide by. You don’t want to give users full freedom to do what they please. This is the case even if your site doesn’t involve user generated content.
Our business law attorneys often review website terms and conditions for clients. While terms differ depending on the industry, we generally recommend these provisions:
- The activities that constitute violations
- The consequences for users that fail to comply
- Policies regarding prices, fees, shipping, returns, refunds, etc. Amazon’s terms and conditions provides a good example. It’s also only a single page, showing that the terms don’t need to be super lengthy.
Finally, be sure users can easily find the terms and conditions. The best way is to include a link in the footer.
Starting a company website or e-commerce store? Our firm provides various resources for helping startups. Curtis and Casteel Law Group will help you draft a terms and conditions to protect your website from liability.
Edited by Justin Vorhees
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