A contract for services is a contract that involves the provision of services in exchange for something of value (usually money). This is different from a sales contract, which involves the transfer of goods. Services contracts can sometimes be more complex than sales contracts. This is because services can sometimes go on for a long period of time, often in recurring intervals of work. In comparison, sales contracts often involve a one-time transaction.
As a result, services contracts can sometimes take long periods of time to be fully completed. An example of this is with a construction project that takes many years to be completed. During that time, many legal issues can arise with the contract. Contracts for certain services are not allowed (such as contracts for illegal activities).
Examples of service contracts include:
- Building and construction contracts
- Various employment contracts
- Contracts for the provision of entertainment (such as a contract to have a particular singer perform at a venue)
- Finder agreements
- Sports competition and performance contracts
- Contracts for labor (such as landscaping, moving, gardening, etc.)
- Contracts for the provision of artistic talent or scientific research
There can be many, many other types of service contracts. They can range from very informal, simple agreements between neighbors, to very complex business contracts between multiple organizations. Service contracts are not covered by the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), which covers contracts only for the sale of goods.
One common breach of a services contract is where the work is begun, but then is only partially completed. This can happen for instance if the party performing the work suddenly goes out of business or runs out of material. This can cause problems for the other party.
In such cases, a damages award might be issued in order to reimburse the other party for their losses. In other cases, an equitable remedy might be appropriate (such as requiring the breaching party to complete their contract duties).
The laws regulating contracts for services can sometimes be difficult to understand. You may need to hire a business lawyer if you need help drafting or enforcing a services contract. Your attorney can help review the documents, and can also represent you in court in the event that a lawsuit arises.