Virtual Assistant Agreement

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Updated Sep 20, 2023
~ 7 pages
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A virtual assistant agreement is a legally binding contract between a company or individual and a virtual assistant for their business relationships. This legal document can help the parties spell out the specific roles and responsibilities and offer protection to everyone involved. Download a legal template in PRD or Word from Lawrina and fill it out with your key information details.
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Template Description

Paper titled "Virtual Assistant Agreement", woman in headphones talking out of a laptop to a man

A virtual assistant agreement enables the parties (client and virtual assistant) to define expectations for increased accountability and legal protection. Ideally, hiring virtual assistants (VAs) facilitates improved productivity without incurring the high costs associated with in-house employees. As the U.S. Small Business Administration writes, VAs enable you to put processes in place and complete tedious daily tasks so you can focus on your main duties.

Virtual assistants also benefit from working remotely due to the increased flexibility and convenience. They can work from anywhere they want, have a more flexible schedule, and set their rates, among other perks. However, an effective client-virtual assistant relationship requires an agreement to spell out the terms and ensure they agree. If you are an employer seeking to hire a virtual assistant or a freelancer contracting your services, continue reading for more information on virtual assistant agreements, why you need them, and how to create one.

A virtual assistant agreement template provides clients (hiring parties) and virtual assistants (contractors) with a quick means of creating a contract to clarify their expectations and institute the necessary legal protections. You can download this virtual assistant contract template free, available in PDF and Word formats. The virtual assistant agreement template covers the scope of work, description of services, fees and expenses, deliverables and milestones, confidentiality, and several other essential terms of service.

What Is a Virtual Assistant Agreement?

A virtual assistant agreement is a document that defines the contractual relationship between a client (hiring party) and a virtual assistant (contractor). It’s usually signed at the beginning of the engagement and helps set out the expectations of each party. 

For instance, using our sample virtual assistant contract, you can provide a detailed description of the services and capture the essential terms needed to clarify expectations. This helps minimize disputes that would strain your relationship and derail productivity.

Parties of the Virtual Assistant Agreement

A virtual assistant contract exists between the client contracting the services and the service provider, who, in this case, is a virtual assistant. Any parties can initiate the virtual assistant agreement, but they must all agree to the terms by appending their signatures before commencing the relationship.

  • Client – In a virtual assistant agreement, the client refers to the hiring party. They could be in any industry, including law firms, real estate, eCommerce, marketing agencies, solopreneurs, healthcare, and small business owners. Anyone seeking specialized skills, help with time-consuming tasks or wants to scale gradually without hiring full-time employees can benefit immensely by contracting a virtual assistant.

  • Virtual Assistant – Mostly, a virtual assistant is an independent contractor. They offer administrative services to firms and businesses remotely. Their services can vary depending on the nature of the client's business and their skills. For instance, Lawrina's virtual assistant contract template highlights common administrative tasks a law firm would seek help for, such as document production, exhibits, e-filing, and client deposition preparation. Other general tasks in a virtual assistant contract example may include managing schedules, customer service, organizing files, making travel arrangements, and managing social media and email accounts.

Key Terms

General terminologies you might come across in a virtual assistant agreement may include:

  • Agreement – A legally binding arrangement reached by more than one party;
  • Confidential information – Sensitive information shared between a few people and whose disclosure to unauthorized third parties can damage the owner;
  • Deliverable – A quantifiable output expected to be delivered as part of the process;
  • Independent contractor – A self-employed individual (in this case, virtual assistant) hired to perform services for another person or organization;
  • Scope creep – Assigning more tasks or deliverables outside the initial scope without prior consultation;
  • Services – Tasks the virtual assistant will perform on behalf of the client;
  • Third-party – Any person other than the main parties involved in the agreement; and
  • Virtual assistant contract template – A pre-written contract format containing the basic terms, which users can customize to suit their needs.

Do I Have To Make a Virtual Assistant Contract Myself?

You do not necessarily have to make a virtual assistant agreement yourself. However, if you're conversant with the details you must include, you could draft it. You can create it from scratch or use a sample virtual assistant contract for inspiration. But a legal professional should check the final draft to ensure it covers all the basics needed to protect yourself and complies with the applicable laws. 

Alternatively, you can use Lawrina's virtual assistant contract template, which captures all the basic terms an agreement requires. You only need to make a few edits to customize your virtual assistant agreement form for your services. 

How To Create a Virtual Assistant Contract Template

A virtual assistant contract template can be of any length, depending on the nature of services and specific task requirements. However, below are five crucial components every template must capture.

1. Work Description

The virtual assistant contract should clearly outline the services the virtual assistant should perform for the client. This ensures they know their expectations and that the assigned tasks match their skills.

A detailed work description also eliminates the risk of scope creep. Usually, this refers to a situation whereby the client assigns the virtual assistant additional tasks outside the initially agreed scope without consulting. With the roles and expectations agreed on beforehand, it's much easier for the virtual assistant to request compensation for additional tasks.

2. Deliverables

The virtual assistant agreement should outline specific deliverables, as vague expectations can lead to misunderstandings. Each deliverable or task should have clear schedules and deadlines, e.g., 10 hours per week or three projects per week.

3. Non-Disclosure

The virtual assistant contract should include a non-disclosure clause. This requires the virtual assistant to commit not to disclose the client's confidential information to third parties. Usually, items that must be kept private, such as client lists and business processes, are listed.

4. Expected Working Hours

Virtual assistant contracts should also outline the expected working hours. As much as virtual assistants work under more flexible schedules than full-time workers, a client expects them to commit to a certain amount of time per week or month. 

Depending on the services provided, the client might also require the virtual assistant to be available during specific business hours. This should be indicated to ensure they’re available when clients need their services. It also enables them to manage expectations and avoid conflict.

5. Payment

A virtual assistant agreement should indicate the terms of payment, such as:

  • Rate;

  • Payment schedule;

  • Reimbursement for expenses incurred while performing duties;

  • Overtime and bonuses; and

  • Payment method.

As an independent contractor, a virtual assistant does not enjoy the same Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) protection as an employee, such as minimum wage and overtime; hence, the contract must capture clear payment terms.

Why Do You Need a Virtual Assistant Agreement?

Virtual assistant contracts define expectations for a smooth working relationship between clients and contractors. Clients have confidence their work will be performed as expected, while virtual assistants are assured of payment for services rendered.

A virtual assistant agreement also provides legal protection in case of a dispute. For instance, termination provisions protect a client should they decide to end the engagement for non-performance. In the same way, if the virtual assistant agreement requires the client to pay penalties for delayed payment, the assistant can take action if they breach the terms.

Other benefits of virtual assistant contracts to individual parties include:

Benefits to Client
  • Create professional boundaries;
  • Protect confidentiality of private information.
Benefits to Virtual Assistant
  • Prevent scope creep;
  • Guarantee payment for services rendered.

Whether you're a client seeking to hire a virtual assistant or a freelancer contracting your services, having a virtual assistant agreement is immensely beneficial. You can create the document conveniently by downloading our free virtual assistant contract in Word format and customizing it to suit your specific services.

Common Use Cases

Agreements are vital legal documents where business relationships are involved. Whether you’re a hiring party or a contractor, a virtual assistant contract is a must-have document in most cases. However, not every engagement requires signing the contract. Here is a highlight of some of the common use cases:

  • Engagement requires sharing sensitive information with the VA that must be kept confidential;
  • Client needs help with high-priority services; hence necessary for the virtual assistant to express their commitment in writing;
  • VA wants an assurance that work will be available and paid for a pre-agreed minimum number of hours per week; and
  • There is a potential risk of scope creep.

When Not To Use the Virtual Assistance Agreement

Similarly, there are instances where a virtual assistant agreement might not be necessary. These include:

  • One-off projects with no sensitive client information shared;
  • The terms of engagement qualify the assistant as an employee and not an independent contractor; and
  • General occasional services such as blogging, conducting research, or making travel arrangements.

In addition to the task deliverables, you will want to add a section to the agreement that explains exactly when or how often you expect your virtual assistant to work for you. In this section, you may want to clarify that they are responsible for managing the entire office and therefore must work five days per week, eight hours per day from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Eastern Standard Time. Or, if it is a remote or part-time position, the agreement might instead stipulate that they have to work 10 hours per week, but there are no set days of the week during which time those 10 hours must be accumulated.

Legal Disclaimer

Please note that Lawrina does not provide any legal services. The information on Lawrina’s Site and its downloadable content, including legal articles and templates, shall not be considered legal advice and is not guaranteed to be correct, complete, and up-to-date. If you require legal advice on your issue, we recommend you contact a qualified attorney licensed in your state. You personally assume full responsibility for any consequences, damages, and costs associated with your use of any content of Lawrina Services available on Lawrina’s Site.

By using Lawrina’s Site you agree with mentioned above and give your irrevocable consent to comply with and to be bound by the provisions of Lawrina Service terms.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do virtual assistants need contracts?

Yes, as independent contractors, virtual assistants need contracts in most cases. Virtual assistant agreements serve multiple purposes, e.g., outlining project expectations for effective service delivery. They also act as a commitment from the client to pay the assistant for the services rendered at the agreed rate and schedule. Should a client breach the terms stated in the virtual assistant contract, a contractor can commence legal action.

In most cases, the clients initiate virtual assistant agreements, but virtual assistants can also prepare the agreements. It’s a gesture of professionalism and can make their business appear more credible and trustworthy. 

What should be in a virtual assistant contract?

A virtual assistant agreement can cover as much information as necessary for a smooth engagement. There's no restriction on how long a virtual assistant contract should be as long as it covers the basics. 

Below are seven essential terms you may want to include:

  1. Work description;
  2. Deliverables;
  3. Non-disclosure clause;
  4. Expected working hours;
  5. Payment details;
  6. Restrictive covenants; and
  7. Termination provisions.
     
What are the benefits of using a virtual assistant contract template?

The main benefit of using a virtual assistant contract template is that it simplifies the preparation process. It makes it easier for anyone to create the agreement fast and cost-effectively. With a virtual assistant agreement template from a credible source such as Lawrina, you’re assured of the contract’s validity as it captures all the necessary details.

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