What are Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers?
Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers set out the general legal terms intended to apply to all of a business’ sales of services to consumers from business premises. Terms and Conditions (T&Cs) are intended to apply to sales made on standard terms, to supplement the individual terms of a contract (eg the exact price a customer pays).
This document is GDPR compliant.
When should I use Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers?
Use these Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers:
when you are supplying services to consumers (ie private individuals who are not acting in the course of a business)
when goods are also being supplied or when they are not
when selling from your business premises only
when you are supplying services to specification and/or standard services
for businesses in England, Wales, or Scotland
About Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers
Learn more about making your Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers
How to make Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers
Making your Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers is simple. Just answer a few questions and Rocket Lawyer will build your document for you. When you have all of the information prepared in advance, creating your document is a quick and easy process.
You’ll need the following information:
Your business’ details
What are the business’ address, email address, and phone number?
Quotes and orders
For how many days after being issued are any quotations or fee estimates valid?
Will details of a customer’s order be attached to the Terms and Conditions or set out separately?
Will the business confirm that orders have been accepted in writing or via email?
Will you allow customers to cancel orders after they’ve been accepted? If so, within how many days of an order being accepted can it be cancelled by the consumer?
Is payment for services required in advance of delivery or after an invoice has been issued?
If in advance of delivery, how many days before delivery is payment required?
If after an Invoice, how many days after receiving an invoice does a customer have to pay?
Additions to service provision
Will the business provide any after-sales services (eg operational support for a product that the business installed for a customer)?
Standards and complaints
How will the business deal with any complaints received from customers? You must provide a brief complaints policy, eg including a timeframe within which you will respond to complaints.
Does the business follow any codes of conduct? If so, what are the codes called and where can they be found?
Will the business provide a guarantee (ie a manufacturer’s guarantee) for any ancillary goods provided with the services?
Where can the business’ Data protection and data security policy be found?
What is the email address of the person within the business responsible for data protection compliance?
- If the business is based in Scotland, will the Terms and Conditions (ie the relevant contracts) be governed by the laws of England and Wales or the laws of Scotland?
Common terms in Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers
Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers set out key information about contracts and the terms on which they will be formed. To do this, this Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers template includes the following sections:
Please read all these terms and conditions
The document starts by telling consumers that they should read all of the Terms and Conditions to ensure that they agree with them, as once an order is made by a consumer the business may accept this order and form a legally binding contract without obtaining further assent from the consumer.
Here the business (ie the ‘supplier’) to whose transactions the Terms and Conditions apply is identified. It’s also highlighted that the T&Cs will apply to purchases of services by consumers and that, by ordering any services from the business, a consumer is agreeing to be bound by the T&Cs (ie they will form part of the legally binding contract that’s formed between the business and the consumer).
This section defines various key terms used in the Terms and Conditions. When these terms are used capitalised in the document they will carry the meanings they’re given here. For example, it’s set out who qualifies as a ‘Consumer’, what counts as a ‘Contract’, and what constitutes an ‘Order’.
This section sets out various details about the services the business provides. For example, that services are provided subject to availability and may be changed if necessary to comply with the law, and that if any goods or services are provided to meet special requirements it’s the customer’s responsibility to ensure they provide correct information to enable this.
It’s also noted that descriptions contained in advertising materials are for illustrative purposes only and actual goods and services provided may be slightly different.
Here the customer is required to provide any necessary access, information, licences, and similar that are required to allow service provision. If they do not do so, the business may generally pause service provision or end a contract by giving written notice.
Basis of sale
This section explains when a contract between the business and a consumer is formed (eg once the business has accepted an order). The maximum period that any quotations made are open for is also set out and it’s noted that contracts cannot be varied once formed unless a variation is agreed to in writing.
The types of contracts to which these Terms and Conditions are to apply are also identified. For example, on-premises sales only (eg not sales via a website).
Fees and payment
The fee payable for the services and (if applicable) goods is identified by reference to price lists and any other prices agreed between the business and a consumer in writing. It’s also noted that Value Added Tax (VAT) is included in fees and charges. How and when payment must be made (eg within a specified number of days following an invoice or preceding delivery) is also identified.
Here the business commits to delivering services and any ancillary goods within agreed time periods or within reasonable periods of time if no period was agreed. This section then sets out what a customer may do if delivery does not occur in time (eg fee reductions or refunds may be available). The customer can also treat the contract as ended (and will have any payments made under it returned to them) if, for example, the business refuses to deliver.
Other provisions on delivery are also set out, for example:
customers cannot accept some goods and reject others if the goods form a commercial unit (ie a unit the division of which would impair the goods’ value)
any deliveries outside of the UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands must be agreed to by the business and the customer will need to pay any import duties
redelivery costs may be charged if the customer fails to take delivery
the customer should examine any goods before accepting them - goods will become the customer’s responsibility from delivery
Risk and title
This section states that the customer takes on the risk of (ie is financially responsible for) any damages to or loss of goods once they’ve been delivered. However, ownership of the goods will only be transferred to the customer once full payment has been received.
Withdrawal (or ‘Withdrawal and cancellation’)
This section will always set out a consumer’s right to withdraw from an order before a contract is formed (eg before the order is accepted) by telling the business of their wish to do so. No reason is needed and the consumer should not be liable to the business in any way (eg they should not owe the business money).
If you’ve chosen to include a right to cancel contracts under your Terms and Conditions, this will also be set out here. The clause will tell consumers that they have a specified number of days from entering into a contract within which they can change their mind and cancel the contract (unless goods were made to special requirements). In such instances, any delivered goods should be returned and any necessary refunds made.
Conformity (or ‘Conformity and guarantee’)
This section sets out various requirements for services and any ancillary goods that are provided. For example:
services must be provided with reasonable care and skill
the business must supply goods that conform with the relevant contract, are of satisfactory quality, and which are reasonably fit for their purpose
if anything was said or written to a consumer by or on behalf of the business that was taken into account by the consumer when they entered into their contract, this statement will generally be considered to be a term of the contract (ie legally binding)
if the business is giving a guarantee: the business must give the consumer the benefit of a manufacturer’s guarantee for any ancillary goods (ie the consumer generally has a right to claim repairs or replacements or similar if any such goods turn out the be of inadequate quality)
if the business is providing specified after-sale services: it must provide these
Duration, termination and suspension
Next, the document sets out when a consumer’s contract can be ended. Generally, a contract will continue for at least as long as it takes for the services to be performed. Either the business or the consumer may end the contract or may suspend the provision of services by giving written notice if the other party:
commits a serious breach of the contract which cannot, or is not within 30 days of notice, remedied
Successors and our sub-contractors
Here both parties are given permission to transfer (eg assign) their benefits under a contract to another party, although the original party will remain liable for its obligations under the contract. It’s also noted that, if the business uses any subcontractors to help it perform its obligations, it will be liable (eg financially responsible) for the subcontractors’ acts.
Circumstances beyond the control of either party
This acts as a broad force majeure clause. It allows either party to suspend its obligations under a contract as far as is reasonable, without liability for the failure to perform, if performance is prevented by the occurrence of an event beyond the party’s reasonable control. The party must inform the other party of this as soon as reasonably practicable and the consumer is still entitled to cancel or exercise other rights related to delivery set out in the Terms and Conditions.
This section sets out instances in which the business is not liable for (ie not legally responsible for or potentially required to cover the costs of) any losses a consumer incurs due to a breach of a contract by the business. For example, losses of profit or similar that should not be applicable to consumers or losses that were not reasonably foreseeable to the business and consumer when the contract was made.
It’s also noted that the business does not exclude or limit liability for fraudulent acts or omissions or for death or personal injury caused by its negligence or breaches of other legal obligations.
Governing law, jurisdiction and complaints
Some final, general clauses of the Terms and Conditions are set out here. These include:
whether contracts will be governed by the law of England and Wales or the law of Scotland (ie which courts have jurisdiction over contracts)
which courts can be used to resolve any disputes (eg the courts or Scotland or of Northern Ireland, if the courts of Scotland have jurisdiction over the contract and the customer lives in Northern Ireland)
how the business deals with complaints
if the business follows any codes of conduct, what these are and where they can be found
If you want your Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers to include further or more detailed provisions, you can edit your document. However, if you do this, you may want a lawyer to review the document for you (or to make the changes for you) to make sure that your modified Terms and Conditions comply with all relevant laws. Use Rocket Lawyer’s Ask a lawyer service for assistance.
Legal tips for businesses
Always use the correct terms and conditions
It’s important that, for every sale you make (of goods or of services) that requires terms and conditions, you use the correct terms and conditions for your sale. This may require one business to have multiple sets of T&Cs in place that are used in different circumstances if, for example, you provide goods both from business premises and online.
This is important as, if you use the incorrect T&Cs, your T&Cs could contain irrelevant information or could omit certain information that must by law be communicated to the relevant type of customer (eg consumers who purchase online are usually entitled to a 14-day statutory cancellation period and they must be informed of this right). If you fail to provide necessary information when making sales, your business could be exposed to costly legal claims in future.
For more information, read How to choose the right terms and conditions and the FAQ ‘When are these Terms and Conditions not suitable?’.
Correctly incorporate your Terms and Conditions into your contracts
In some ways, the law favours consumers, as in commercial transactions they’re generally considered to have less bargaining power and relevant knowledge. This means that, if it’s not clear whether Terms and Conditions were validly incorporated into a contract and a business attempts to rely on one of the terms during litigation, it may be difficult for the business to argue that the terms were incorporated (ie that they make up part of the relevant contract).
You can be more sure that you’re correctly incorporating your T&Cs into your contracts by:
making sure to bring them to customers’ attention before they form contracts (eg before they place orders)
making sure T&Cs are fair, and
by making sure they’re accessible
Understand when to seek advice from a lawyer
In some circumstances, it’s good practice to Ask a lawyer for advice to ensure that you’re complying with the law and that you are well protected from risks. You should consider asking for advice if:
Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers FAQs
What is included in Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers?
Why do I need Terms and Conditions for Supply of Services to Consumers?
Terms and Conditions set out the rights and commitments of a seller and a buyer during the sale of products. T&Cs should always be clear and fair.
Comprehensive Terms and Conditions ensure that provisions are made for various aspects of a transaction when a commercial contract is formed. This protects your business’ interests and ensures that consumers are treated fairly and are clear on their rights and obligations in relation to their purchase. Having clear Terms is often particularly important for the supply of services, as customer satisfaction with service provision can be more subjective than for the supply of goods - having a formal legal document to help resolve any disputes can be invaluable.
Moreover, there is certain information that businesses must provide to consumers when selling to them from their business premises. This includes the terms of the contract of sale, such as prices and delivery provisions. The best way to provide this mandatory information is within a clear Terms and Conditions document.
For more information, read Terms and conditions.
When are these Terms and Conditions not suitable?
These Terms and Conditions are designed to be used only for contracts for the supply of services to consumers (ie private individuals) from a business’ premises.
If you’re selling services via a website, you should create Terms and conditions for supply of services to consumers via a website instead.
If you’re selling goods instead of services, you should create Terms and conditions for the sale of goods to consumers from business premises or via a website.
If your customers are other businesses, you should make Terms and conditions for the sale of goods to business customers or for the supply of services to business customers.
You do not need to use a standard Terms and Conditions document (like this one) if:
you offer services on a daily basis that are performed immediately (eg hairdressing services), or
For more information, read How to choose the right terms and conditions.
Are Terms and Conditions legally binding?
Terms and Conditions are intended to form part of contracts between a business and its customers (ie they are meant to be ‘incorporated’ into the contracts). Terms and Conditions that form part of a contract are legally binding, as long as they are compliant with relevant laws (eg consumer protection laws).
Your Terms and Conditions may not be legally binding if they’re considered to be unfair. The Consumer Rights Act 2015 prevents consumers from being legally bound by contractual terms that are considered unfair to them. For example, terms that allow a seller to alter a contract’s terms without a valid and pre-specified reason, or terms allowing a seller to change the prices of goods, would be considered unfair. If you include unfair terms like these in your Terms and Conditions they will not be implemented, although any terms within the document not considered unfair will still generally be implemented. This Terms and Conditions template is designed to avoid creating any unfair terms.
How do I incorporate my Terms and Conditions into my business’ contracts?
Businesses must make reasonable efforts to bring their Terms and Conditions to a customer's attention before a sale takes place (ie before the contract is formed). To help achieve this, your Terms and Conditions should generally appear on the back of all contractual documents and documents used during the ordering process, for example, quotations, order forms, acknowledgements of orders, delivery notes, brochures, or catalogues.
Do these Terms and Conditions cover the supply of goods alongside services?
You should consider whether the services your business provides involve the provision of any ancillary goods (ie related goods or materials, like materials and appliances for fitted kitchens or bathrooms). If ancillary goods are being provided, the sale of these will also be covered by these Terms and Conditions.
What are consumers’ statutory rights?
Consumers benefit from considerable legal protections and have certain legal rights (ie their statutory rights). These rights must be upheld in your Terms and Conditions and beyond. Consumers’ statutory rights include:
having services they purchase be provided with reasonable care and skill
being able to rely on the information (spoken or written) provided about the provision of services pre-contract
paying a reasonable price for the services provided if a price was not agreed on beforehand
having the services provided within a reasonable time if a timeframe was not agreed on beforehand
You cannot use Terms and Conditions to change or exclude consumers’ statutory rights. The words 'your statutory rights are not affected' are often used to demonstrate a seller’s understanding of this and to communicate this to consumers.
When do I have to refund a consumer?
If the services being provided don’t meet the requirements set by consumer rights law, a business may have to repeat the entire service provision at no extra cost to the consumer.
Where repeat performance of the service is impracticable, the consumer may be entitled to a full or partial refund, or a price reduction (of up to 100% of the cost).
If a refund is agreed to, you should refund a consumer within 14 days of agreement. For more information, read Doing business with consumers.
Should I provide a guarantee?
There is no legal requirement for businesses to provide a guarantee (ie a legally binding promise) regarding the services (eg a guarantee of quality). However, you may wish to offer one as part of your customer service and promotion. You may wish to provide a guarantee for any ancillary goods you provide if you are in a position to replace or repair them.
Can I specify when payment is required?
Your T&Cs can state the time period within which payment is required for services. However, the time period between payment and performance of services shouldn’t be too long (eg payment shouldn’t be required 13 months in advance of service provision).