Tradesmen / Suppliers / Helpers

Contract Template Downloads

We suggest that you should always sign a written contract with your contractor, it can be difficult to know where to get started. In case of a dispute a signed copy of contract maybe requested. forms of contract can be downloaded by clicking here

What is a “Mutual Assent”?

Mutual Assent is a formal way of saying that both of you agree to the same thing. “Mutual Assent” should contain both of the following:

  • A ‘Quote’ (for example, a plumber may ‘Quote’ to replace and refit your mixer taps).
  • AnAcceptance’ (you agree to pay for the works detailed and you both agree to the terms).

Understanding of contracts

Have you ever been halfway through a project when you suddenly realise that you should have had a contract with your supplier/helper? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Written contracts are rarer than they should be, and disagreements surrounding verbal contracts are all too common. But knowing when you need a written contract is not always straightforward.

When and why should you have a written contract?

In a perfect world, any agreement you make with a supplier/helper would be outlined in a detailed document which is signed and dated. However, sometimes this just isn’t practical. It can also feel socially unacceptable (implying a lack of trust) for a very small and straightforward job. But even for these small jobs, it’s important that everybody is clear on what work will be carried out, how much it’s going to cost and what will happen if things go wrong. A quick discussion and ‘mutual assent’ typically constitute a contract.Ultimately, it is a judgement call as to whether the project warrants a written contract, and this is something you should carefully consider. Written contracts start to become necessary when a project is complex, has staged payments, or is of significant cost. If in doubt, use a written contract here.

That should help you make sure your contract is fit for purpose.

How to resolve a dispute with your employer?

Projects are often complex and mistakes can be made on both sides. In the unfortunate event of a dispute, we first suggest that you discuss any problems with your employer directly and try to work out a solution that suits you and your employer.

If you have kept a written log of the project, offer evidence and examples to support your claims. It may also help to refer back to relevant points in the contract, if one was drawn up.

Be fair and allow your employer to respond. Most employers want to get the job done and will be keen to come to an amicable agreement.

However, if you are unable to resolve an issue directly with your employer, you might want to seek further help or advice.

Citizens Advice

Try contacting Citizens Information who provide help and advice to consumers through a national telephone service and local offices. Citizens information also explains your rights through their self help.

Independent Mediation

You may be able to resolve your dispute through independent mediation. Mediation would give you and your employer the chance to find a solution to your problem with the help of an independent third party. Contact your local Citizens Information Centre for more details about how to find a local mediator.

If you are still unable to reach a satisfactory resolution, you might want to consider starting legal proceedings. Legal action can be a costly and time-consuming process, and should only be used as a last resort.