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Fundraising Contracts – what to include?

Charities taking on freelance fundraisers or using fundraising consultants are required by law to have a written contract in place. This need not be lengthy but does need to cover some basics and now must also take into account the needs of vulnerable donors. So what should you include?

As a basic minimum, the contract should set out the scope and terms of the assignment, including the nature of the work and the way it will be charged. It must include the names and addresses of the parties and set out how long it is valid for and the circumstances in which the parties can terminate it and how.

Most consultants should be able to provide a standard contract for you to review and agree. However, this may not always be the case, especially if you are working with a freelancer. The contract need not be a lengthy document, but must cover the key points above. It is also in the charity's interest to ensure it retains the copyright to any work which results and also to make sure its confidentiality is protected.

It is also now obligatory to consider the rights of vulnerable donors, including how they will be protected and the ways in which the charity can monitor this. An example of a clause to cover this is as follows:

"In conducting or advising on fundraising, the Consultancy shall protect people in vulnerable circumstances and others from unreasonable intrusion into their privacy, unreasonably persistent approaches or undue pressure to donate to the Charity, for example in the way campaigns and contact programmes are designed. The Charity can monitor compliance in this area, where relevant, via telephone calls, by email and in meetings with the Consultancy, as required."

Reference should also be made to how the charity can monitor compliance with the Fundraising Code. For example:

"The Consultancy, its employees and associates agree to abide by the Code or Codes of Fundraising Practice issued from time to time by the Fundraising Regulator. Compliance with the Fundraising Code by the Consultancy can be monitored by the Charity via regular telephone calls, by email and in meetings, as required."

Compliance is an increasingly important area for fundraising and legal agreements such as fundraising contracts are one area you must get right.

If you have general questions about fundraising contracts, please call our hotline on 01785 663600. However, if you require legal advice we suggest you speak to a solicitor who specialises in this area.

There are more FAQs about using fundraising consultants here.

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