Terms and conditions of contract

Standard conditions of contract form the foundation on which the contract is built. They define the general rights and obligations that it is reasonable for the parties to ask for and accept. They should be drafted in such a way that the minimum of alteration is required to meet the widely varying circumstances of any given contract situation.

The terms and conditions under which the contract is carried out either provide the buyer with contractual safeguards or put him/her at risk. See also Battle of the Forms.

Here are some potential Problems and Solutions that can arise with terms and conditions

Your institution will have standard terms and conditions of contract that should be used. These will be available from your Procurement Office web site or you should contact your Head of Procurement. However, when seeking tenders and quotations, it may be necessary to add specific conditions relating to the particular requirement, for example,

  • price – what must be included in the price quoted, such as installation and commissioning
  • delivery – perhaps a specific delivery date and time
  • indemnity and insurance – the level of cover required, who bears any loss, etc
  • terms of payments – stage payments or guarantees required should stage payments be required

There are some other terms and conditions which, from time to time, you may use yourself or see in the supplier’s terms and conditions, for example, penalty clauses and liquidated damages clauses.