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Avoiding legal trouble as an consultant

Discussion in 'Business & Tax Advice' started by robertheise, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. robertheise

    robertheise Newbie

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    Hello!

    I am in the process of becoming an IT Project Manager. My mission is to build a team for a specific clients needs and to let the team execute the project. My duty is to find the right people and to communicate between the team and the client till the project is finished.
    What I am afraid about is following: Lets say the team doesnt deliver. Something happens. Or the product is not as envisioned by me. How to avoid legal trouble?
    I think the best option is to create a legal paper which clearly states what the specific roles of the people involved are.

    What do you think? Perhaps you have experience with similar problems. Thanks in advance.

    greetings, Robert
     
  2. neverquitting

    neverquitting Regular Member

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    Opening disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer

    Your document might give you legal recourse to recover losses from your team, but that also requires that you be able to get a hold of your team (if they just disappear, you're kinda SOL). But it's not going to save you from your client, who is paying you to deliver a project. If you don't deliver, they deserve their money back, there's not really a way around that. In fact, even if you said your job was just to connect a client with a team that you've assembled and then you walk away, you'd still be partially on the hook for not doing the due diligence to make sure this team can actually deliver your client's needs.

    TL;DR, if you don't trust your team to get the job done, what the hell are you doing reselling their work to a client?
     
  3. Reviewergal

    Reviewergal Junior Member

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    I do not think there is any iron clad way to protect yourself in that situation. There is nothing wrong with a contract of some kind, but if you are the sole point of contact between the buyer and contractors then you are ultimately responsible for seeing that the work is completed. No buyer wants to hear a sad sorry story about a team that is missing in action. They only want to see their finished work. The best thing to do in that situation is find a team that is willing to be paid after the work is completed (and always pay them promptly) so that you are able to refund the buyer without issue if the work isn't completed. You will still have a frustrated client and lost business, but at least you won't have someone hunting you down for money.
     
  4. tony_d

    tony_d Elite Member

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    I think you miss the point entirely. 'Creating a legal paper' is a massive waste of time.

    It's your responsibility as the project manager to make sure the team does deliver, and that the product is as envisioned.

    There are no amount of words on paper that can mask your incompetence if you've fundamentally failed in your role.

    So instead of preemptive ass-covering, why not focus on delivering what you need to deliver?
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  5. patricklass75

    patricklass75 Newbie

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    You're obviously in a contract situation. Set up a LLC, limited liability corporation. The key words here are 'limited liability'. Should something go a rye, you can shut them down if you have the right lawyer in place my friend.