Software development contract

This is a basic contract for a client to have software written by a contractor, that includes strong intellectual property protection. It is suitable for a large number of types of software, from websites and apps to CRM systems.
Suitable for use in: England & Wales and Scotland
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  • Plain English makes editing easy
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About this document

This is a contract to have software written for use in any business. It is intended to make sure you, the client, get what you have paid for.

The work you want could be to write or edit your website, or make up a software system from your old spreadsheets, or give you a tailor-made database or information system.

The software developer should be a self-employed contractor, in the same country or abroad.

He or she will work on or off your premises. He may use staff besides himself.

This contract can be used as an “umbrella” agreement, so that future work is also covered under it.

We have assumed you are in business through a company but the contract can be easily edited if you are an individual or partnership.

Alternatives to this document

We have a more comprehensive version, suitable for work with a corporate IT consultant.

A very tough contract for a large project is our web design contract. This is easily adaptable to other software work.


The most important points covered by this agreement include:

  • Definitions and interpretation
  • Warranties
  • Contract work
  • New intellectual property
  • Payment
  • Security provisions
  • Use of sub-contractors
  • Confidential information
  • Indemnities by contractors
  • Insurance
  • Tax matters
  • Termination provisions
  • Other matters relating to enforcement and other legal issues

This document was written by a solicitor for Net Lawman. It complies with current English law.

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