Browsing the web, you’ve accepted a ton of Terms and Conditions. But have you ever wondered why websites need them?

It’s simple: they set the rules, protect your content and help to protect you, the website/app owner, from legal liabilities. Terms and Conditions are essential when doing business online. 

If you want more in-depth knowledge about Terms and Conditions, keep on reading! You will learn about its practical use and why you should seriously consider adding them to your website or app.

What Are the Terms and Conditions and Why Do I Need Them?

“Terms and Conditions”, also known as “Terms of Service” (ToS), “Terms of Use”, EULA (“End-User License Agreement”), “General Conditions” or “Legal Notes”, is the document which defines the contractual relationship between the provider of a service and its user. In other words, Terms and Conditions are essentially a contract between you, the owner of a website, app, or e-commerce service, and your users. It is, in all respects, a legally binding document.

While a privacy policy protects the users and their data, Terms and Conditions protect you, the business owner because they establish and set your rules for your website, app, or e-commerce (within applicable law). 

For instance, using Terms and Conditions you can easily:

  • protect your content with copyright;
  • define how users should interact with one another on your platform;
  • set the rules for the cancellation or suspension of a user’s account:
  • set disclaimers protecting yourself from particular legal liabilities and much more.

Terms and Conditions are critically important because they help you to easily handle problems that may arise and prevent them from happening in the first place!

Are Terms and Conditions always mandatory?

Terms and Conditions are not always mandatory, though they are usually recommended. Let’s have a closer look:

  • Terms and Conditions are often mandatory when running commerce-based services. This is because they often contain legally required information, such as users’ rights, withdrawal or cancellation disclosures. 

In such cases, you’re subjected to the applicable commercial laws and industry rules, and Terms and Conditions are often used to set the conditions of sale and all other relevant requirements.

You can learn more about specific e-commerce requirements here.

  • Terms and Conditions are highly recommended whenever you’re handling sensitive information, such as payment data, or complex issues are at stake.

In general, it’s always better for you to have a Terms and Conditions document in place, even when it’s not explicitly legally required. They set boundaries, like the limitation of liability clauses, sometimes defining the conditions and under which countries’ laws you may be held liable – hereby helping to protect you and your business. 

How to write Terms and Conditions

  1. First of all, you should avoid using a template. Terms and Conditions apply to many different and specific scenarios– as a legally binding document, it’s necessary that they match your business and your needs

    Instead, we suggest seeking legal advice, or using a professional solution like our lawyer-crafted Terms and Conditions generator.
  2. Regardless of your business, there are some essential elements that a Terms and Conditions document should include. 

    The most generally relevant are:
    1. Accurate identifying and contact details for your business.  Terms and Conditions are essentially a legal document. Your business must be correctly identified and users must be able to reach you with questions regarding policies or operations.
    1. A clear description of the service that your site provides and how the service should be used.
    1. Any potential disclaimers that may apply to your specific business activities.
    1. Any legally required information such as warranty details and information on consumer rights.

Furthermore, when applicable, a good Terms and Conditions document also contains the following elements, to protect yourself further from liabilities:

  • Information on risk allocation, liability
  • Warranty/Guarantee information
  • The existence of a withdrawal right
  • Safety information, including instructions for proper use
  • Terms of delivery of product/service
  • Rights of use
  • Conditions of use/purchase (e.g. age requirements, location-based restrictions)
  • Refund policy/exchange/termination of service and related information
  • Information related to methods of payment

Remember that Terms and Conditions are meant to protect you and your business, so they should match your specific requirements. If you use a Terms and Conditions generator, choose which clauses you include carefully. 

[Tip: Your Terms and Conditions should always be clearly visible and accessible to all users. That’s why it’s a good idea to add them to your site’s footer and on your sign-up forms.]

Not sure where to start? We’ve got your back! Our powerful Terms and Conditions Generator comes pre-selected with the most common configuration and includes helpful hints and tips to set you on your way. Also, our helpful customer service staff are always a few clicks away via chat.

💡No need to hire a lawyer! Create your Terms and Conditions with iubenda’s lawyer-crafted solution. Start generating here.

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