The Person With The Contract Is The Person With The Power

Shalini Nandan

Shalini Nandan from Legally Shalini

There’s a real need for proper, affordable legal documentation for smaller startup businesses until they can support a custom drafted suite of documents.

“Easy to use, affordable, DIY legal templates, written in plain English (not legal-ese) are important, so everyone can understand their obligations.”

— Shalini Nandan-Singh

BRISBANE, QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA, May 31, 2021 / — Despite business being turned on its head in 2020, startups in Australia are thriving with the growth of new companies at almost 3%. Many of these new ventures have been started by people opting out of corporate life, pivoting their services to incorporate a new online offering, and turning their side-hustle into their primary source of income.

While this bodes well for the Australian economy, this entrepreneurial freedom can come at a cost. Contract specialist Shalini Nandan-Singh, founder of Legally Shalini, said there’s less support across all areas of business when you go out on your own. “People leaving corporate life to start their own business no longer have a team of professional colleagues – such as finance, HR, admin – or a legal department to guide or protect them,” she said.

“They may find themselves in unfamiliar territory – now responsible for their own service terms and contracts, shipping policies, return and refund requests, GDPR compliance – and it’s all down to them.

“Because they are micro-businesses or startups, they cannot afford a custom drafted agreement to begin with (this is the gold standard) and many will find themselves needing the protection of a client agreement or contracts at some time.”

Shalini believes there’s a real need for proper, affordable legal documentation, which covers smaller startup businesses until they can support a custom drafted suite of documents.

“Sadly there are many templates out there that are substandard and full of dire warnings and penalties – they’d probably scare the customers off,” she said.

“And to have a really good relationship with your new clients or customers, it’s always good to set expectations, ground rules and boundaries early in the relationship so there is no room for miscommunication.

“That’s where easy to use, affordable, DIY legal templates, written in plain English (not legal-ese) are important, so everyone can understand their obligations.

“Legal documents aren’t supposed to be scary or confusing. These documents, tailored to your strengths, are your way of clearly communicating your obligations – and your client’s. Because when everyone knows where they stand from Day 1, it’s easier to arrive safely at Day 100.”

Shalini helps Australian service-based entrepreneurs protect their business and their bottom line with empowered legal advice and contracts.

“I have always loved the law and yearned to work differently from traditional legal practice. Now, as a lawyer working on my own terms, I help my tribe using life skills gained from my “other” life as a businesswoman in two countries, cohabiting two distinct cultures and two jurisdictions, a mother, partner, journalist, community worker, spiritual seeker and confessed lover all things that are based in joy, ease and grace,” she said.

“It makes me happy to help folk look at their legal challenges as an opportunity for growth in business and personal growth while providing practical support to resolve legal issues and move forward.”

In helping entrepreneurs, Shalini has found many legal templates are quite basic, very generic, and written poorly, and focus negative consequences. “My agreements are well-drafted, and I personally have spent significant time and effort, making sure they’re fit for purpose,” she said.

“Stop worrying about your legal risk. Taking action now to sort your legals will stop you worrying about your business later. Getting your business legals sorted to help you stay safe so that you can enjoy your business.”

Shalini advises new businesses to do their homework and always seek professional advice.

“You know your own business – don’t expect your customers and clients to read what you know and to read your mind,” she said. “Remember, the person with the contract is the person with the power.”

Shalini Nandan-Singh
Legally Shalini
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