Website terms and conditions template: member services for businesses
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- Plain English makes editing easy
- Guidance notes included
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About this website terms and conditions template
This template provides T&C for a website that offers a membership based service to businesses. You could charge a subscription or provide some or all of the services for free.
Typically, member-based sites allow users a high level of interaction with the site, and with other members. This template includes extensive terms relating to acceptable use and removal of offensive content. These aim both to dissuade your members from misuse or malicious use of your site, and to give you additional protection from claims relating to the actions of, or content posted by, your members.
Examples of sites that would use this template include:
- business related introduction and connection sites;
- trade associations and organisations;
- business support networks;
- business related discussion boards.
This template has been written to cover international use because sites that would use such a template are likely to attract visitors from across the world. It has been written to comply with South Africa law, but much is likely to be enforceable in many other legal jurisdictions as well.
The benefit of using these clear terms and conditions
Using this document on your website will help you:
- set out clearly how your business works and what your members can expect;
- present a professional image of your business. Our use of plain language helps ensure members do not feel intimidated by overly formal or legalistic language;
- prevent misunderstandings and make solving disputes easier;
- protect your website from misuse (we include paragraphs that form an Acceptable Use Policy, essential if your visitors interact with your website, for example, by posting reviews or exchanging messages in a customer forum);
- protect your business from complaints about content that your subscribers posted – particularly important if your members can contribute content to your site that you might not moderate in real time.
We have another very similar template if you operate a site that may be used by consumers (private individuals) as well as businesses. See Website terms & conditions template: membership based services.
If your site creates a marketplace for goods or services (where buyers are connected with sellers and transactions occur through your site), one of our terms and conditions templates for marketplace websites might be more appropriate. See Website terms & conditions for marketplace sites.
If you are in any doubt as to which T&C template you should choose, please contact us.
The law in this document
The law in this T&C template is largely common law that deals with the basics of contracts: offer, acceptance, price and payment, delivery, liabilities and risk. That means that, by and large, you can set the commercial terms you want. Our guidance notes will tell you what you can change safely.
This document also contains paragraphs that provide intellectual property protection, both governing how your site content is used by your visitors and members and how information posted to your site by your visitors can be used by you.
The terms and conditions template includes provisions relating to:
- responsibility of the member to provide accurate information;
- terms of membership;
- acceptable Use Policy;
- removal of offensive content;
- security of your website;
- storage of data;
- duration and termination;
- limitation of liability;
- miscellaneous legal matters to protect your business.
This document was written by an attorney for Net Lawman. It complies with current South African law.
"The website is great, the access easy, documents professional. All very smart. Immediately got a good impression of Net Lawman."Hendrik J Pfaff, CFA, Stellenbosch, South Africa
"Very useful and practical for start-ups and entrepreneurs."Purple Cow Ventures
"...Yes very useful. I understand the terminology etc as I've seen a fair few legal docs before. Notes are very helpful. Gives me some base insight without the expense of a solicitor!"John K