Content of a contract for work
As with most other contracts, neither a scheme nor a written form is required for the contract for work. Nevertheless, it should always be in writing, both for reasons of liability and as evidence of agreements made.
A contract for work and services can only be concluded by independently acting persons and companies; a contractual relationship based on an employment contract is not possible. In addition to the standard details of a contract, indispensable elements in the content of a work contract are:
- Task or service description or specification sheet for the exact definition of the work
- Fees for the work
- Termination of the contract for work
- Delivery form of the work
- Rights to use
- Date of completion
- Copyrights are usually regulated separately in a copyright contract
- Payments for additional services such as travel expenses, research and the like
- Payment agreements including payment deadlines, payments on account and the like
Numerous reputable portals such as the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, lawyers, markt.de or the Handwerksblatt provide customizable work contract templates and work contract templates for download on their homepage. Please note that these samples and templates are intended as examples for contracts for work and services and thus only represent a basis for contracts for work and services.
However, you can use these work contract schemes to draft a contract that is optimized for your project without overlooking relevant points.
Acceptance of the contract for work
The acceptance of a work or purchase contract is a legal act that consists in the acceptance of the service provided by the client. What sounds so terribly claused means nothing other than that the contractor presents his work to the client and the client either accepts it as executed or criticizes the execution.
In the event of a defect, BGB § 634, rights of the customer in the event of defects, in conjunction with BGB § 640 acceptance. Section 640 says that the commissioner cannot refuse to accept a contractually manufactured work, “… unless the nature of the work precludes acceptance …”. He is therefore not allowed to refuse acceptance because of insignificant defects.
What is now to be regarded as insignificant, should often be a matter of definition. Basically, there is a substantial defect if the customer cannot be expected to accept the work and to bear the legal consequences for it. This means that there is always a significant defect when either the function or the use of a work is severely restricted or the defect can only be remedied with considerable financial effort.
Examples of unreasonable costs would be rebuilding a floor slab, rewiring a house, completely changing the water supply and the like. However, if the walls were painted purple instead of the agreed yellow color, for example, this can be corrected with a bucket of paint, so it is to be regarded as insignificant and does not constitute a reason to refuse acceptance.
If the client does not issue a notification of defects during acceptance, although he has recognized a defect, and if he does not reserve his rights due to this defect, he loses his claims resulting from BGB § 634, Limitation of Claims for Defects, Paragraphs 1 to 3.
The contractor must notify the customer of the completion of the work and set him a reasonable deadline for acceptance. If the customer fails to observe this deadline or does not refuse acceptance due to at least one defect, the work is deemed to have been accepted (BGB § 640 Paragraph 2).
Caution is advised if the customer is a consumer. In this case, the above-mentioned legal consequences only apply if “… the entrepreneur has informed the purchaser, together with the request for acceptance, of the consequences of an acceptance which has not been declared or has been refused without specifying defects; the notice must be in text form. ”
Termination of a contract for work
For many works, the customer’s cooperation is required. If the customer fails to take the necessary action, the contractor must set him a reasonable grace period. The contractor is only entitled to a right of termination if he combines the grace period with the threat of termination.
If the customer does not comply with the request to catch up by the deadline, the contract concluded with him in accordance with BGB § 643, termination in the event of failure to cooperate, is deemed to be canceled. After the contract has been terminated, the entrepreneur is entitled to the agreed remuneration as well as the expenses not contained therein in accordance with the work performed to date. The further liability of the customer due to negligence remains unaffected.
In contrast to the entrepreneur, according to BGB § 649, cost estimate, the customer can terminate a work contract at any time until the commissioned work has been completed. The contractor is to be remunerated proportionally. These are to be taken into account due to the cancellation of the contract
- saved expenses or the
- Profit from another order or the
Amount that the contractor would earn through another order if he did not neglect to accept the order out of bad faith.
In most cases, the contractor receives around five percent of the agreed remuneration for the part that has not yet been performed.
Compensation for a work contract
The remuneration agreement is an important part of a contract for work and services, i.e. a type of contract for work and services. In the contract, this is usually the term used in industry for work wages. The remuneration agreement states that in the case of a work contract, consideration is owed for the provision of a work.
The BGB regulates this in § 632, there it says, mutatis mutandis, that the amount can be freely agreed. Exceptions are mandatory regulations according to the statutory remuneration regulations, the so-called tax, for example the award and contract regulations for construction services, VOB for short, a three-part set of clauses for construction contracts, or the fee schedule for architects and engineers, the HOAI for short for the accounting of architects and engineers.
If there are no specific agreements, the remuneration customary at the time of the conclusion of the contract is deemed to have been agreed. There are three types of remuneration to choose from:
- Remuneration according to unit price (unit price)
In the case of the unit price, the remuneration is billed according to the service unit. That means there is a price per piece, per square meter or per running meter. The fixing of the unit price is essential for the contract. The calculation basis for the contractor consists of the collective wage of his workers, the estimated time expenditure per service unit, material costs, other fixed and variable costs as well as risk surcharge and profit. This means that the remuneration is independent of the duration of the service; the client does not have to monitor the timing. The likely number of performance units is usually agreed in the contract. The service units actually provided are only determined in accordance with a precise list when the final billing after completion of the order.
- Compensation based on a flat-rate price
With a flat-rate price, the client and the contractor agree on a fixed price for a detailed or general performance target. The price does not change without an additional agreement, even if the service expenditure increases or decreases.
- Remuneration based on time spent
In the case of remuneration based on time spent, the time required for the service is determined and billed accordingly. The contractually agreed remuneration is based on the specified hourly rates. In addition, there are agreements regarding travel costs to the place of use or for trips to procure materials and for billing for the required material.