Collaboration Agreement: Definition + Free Template
A collaboration agreement is an official, written document outlining the scope, rights, and responsibilities of two or more businesses or individuals working together on a specific business task. If you’re an influencer or a business owner working with an influencer, you’ll likely need a collaboration agreement at some point in your partnership. With our template, you can print and fill out a strong agreement immediately.
Collaborations vs. Partnerships vs. Joint Ventures
They may seem similar on the surface, but there are key differences between collaborations, partnerships, and joint ventures you should be aware of before creating a collaboration agreement.
A partnership is the broadest relationship existing between two or more individuals forming an official business entity. The relationship is indefinite, the scope of work is unlimited, and liability is shared.
A joint venture is more narrow than a partnership as it’s a temporary agreement. It exists between two or more businesses rather than individuals. It’s often used when forming a new business project or “venture” and describes the rights and responsibilities of all parties. Taxes and liability remain separate.
A collaboration is the most narrow of all the relationships, usually existing within the context of a single task between businesses or individuals. It’s often (but not always) related to advertising or promotion. Examples may include a food influencer collaborating with a brand to create a recipe using one of the brand’s products or two musicians collaborating on the same song. Like a joint venture, both entities file taxes and handle liabilities separately.
Why Does My Business Need a Collaboration Agreement?
While a collaboration doesn’t necessarily require a written agreement, we strongly recommend having one. If you don’t, very important details could be left unclear, such as who is responsible if anything goes wrong or what happens if someone breaks the agreement terms. Plus, any work produced without a collaboration agreement will have joint copyright, meaning no one can sell or distribute the work without explicit permission from everyone involved.
If you’re a business owner working with another individual or business on a collaborative project, use our template to draft a clear, well-thought-out agreement. With a strong, comprehensive document, there won’t be any room for confusion.
What Should a Collaboration Agreement Include?
At a high level, a collaboration agreement should include at least the following:
- Collaboration details, including scope of work and expectations
- Dates of collaboration project, either fixed or ongoing
- Payment terms, including what happens if an agreement isn’t followed through
- Intellectual property rights and what to do if rights are infringed
- Dispute resolution terms, such as when a deadlock is blocking work progress
- Termination arrangements in the event either party wants out of the contract
- Clauses, including non-compete, non-solicitation, non-disclosure, and confidentiality
Is a Collaboration Agreement Legally Binding?
Yes, a collaboration agreement is legally binding, and dispute resolution terms and termination clauses are important if there’s ever a disagreement between parties. It’s a good idea to consult your business attorney if you’re ever unsure of your responsibilities under any contract.
Collaboration is a great way to help your business reach its goals by partnering with specialists in fields outside your area of expertise. With our collaboration agreement template, you’ll be signing on the dotted line in no time. For more small business resources, check out our library.