Although there is also some unavoidable standardized legalese at various places in the document which our attorney required, in this document we try to write everything in plain English. To do this, we frequently use terms like “we” and “you.” “We,” “us,” “our,” and “the Company” means Sweet Tea Marketing, LLC, a corporation registered in the State of North Carolina. “You,” “your,” “Customer” or “Client” in this document is you, our Client.
Current Hourly Rate
Throughout this document, reference is made to our current hourly rate. This rate is defined as our hourly rate that is in place at the time a service is requested, not at the time this agreement is signed. We will provide you with our current hourly rate any time, upon request.
As of the date of this contract, your hourly rate is $120/hr.
You are hiring us to complete your project according to the specific scope of work we described in the proposal of services above. The proposed cost of the project in the proposal includes only this work. When you hire us, we are independent “work for hire” contractors and not employees of you or your business.
Availability and Communication
We are available via email and phone Monday through Thursday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, Fridays from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm Eastern time. Our normal response time is one business day, though our response time may vary. We do not work on weekends or holidays. Clients with current website management services receive priority response times.
Office phone and email are the primary means of communication accepted for our work together. We do not communicate via social media, or instant/private messaging (like Facebook Messenger) to communicate since we cannot track these requests as a team.
The Proposal of Services
The Proposal of Services details the work we will deliver to you, including without limitations, the deliverables and specifications thereto, and any and all compensation to be paid for such work. If additional services are requested by the Client, the parties may enter into one or more other Proposals of Service signed by the parties. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the terms of any Proposal of Services entered into between the parties, shall be in addition and supplemental to the terms of this Agreement. If there is a conflict between this Master Services Agreement and any part of the Proposal of Services, the terms of the Proposal of Services shall be binding.
In consideration of the services to be provided hereunder the parties agree that the Company shall be paid in accordance with any Proposals of Service executed by the parties pursuant to this Agreement.
Our standard payment terms are:
- Payment is due in full the first day of the contracted service and will be automatically drafted each month on the same date.
Payment to us can be made using check or major credit card. Postdated checks are not an acceptable form of payment. Note that check payments will not be considered received until funds have cleared.
Late Payment and Collections Policy
All invoices pertaining to web hosting, security, maintenance, or any other work on your website are payable on receipt. If an invoice goes unpaid for more than 30 days after the invoice was sent, WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO SUSPEND YOUR WEBSITE FROM PUBLIC VIEW UNTIL ALL OUTSTANDING BILLS ARE CURRENT.
Amounts due and unpaid shall bear an interest at the rate of twelve percent (5%) per month. Client agrees to pay all costs of collection, including reasonable attorney’s fees, as additional sums owed under this Agreement. Client further acknowledges and agrees that if a check tendered for payment is not honored by the bank for non-sufficient funds (“NSF”), it will not be re-deposited. If the bank does not clear the check, the Client will incur a fee of $25. The Client must immediately send a certified check or money order for the amount due, including the NSF fee and any late fees incurred, to the Company to cover returned check.
Termination and Refunds
This Agreement may be terminated immediately by either party upon written notice for any of the following:
- Upon fourteen (14) days prior written notice by either party to the other party, or
- If the other party defaults in the performance of any material provision of this Agreement, which default is not cured within thirty (30) days after written notice from the non-defaulting party.
Prorated refunds will NOT be given on terminated contracts
We use commercially reasonable efforts to make sites that we host available 99.9% of the time during each monthly billing cycle. If we are unable to meet this service level, you will be eligible to receive a credit to apply to future billing cycles based upon the unavailability for that month. For the purposes of this agreement, unavailability means that either your website is unresponsive, or your website returns a server error response to valid user requests for more than 60 seconds of consecutive requests, and in all cases that the unavailability is not because of local, regional, national or international outages.
Unavailability that is a result of scheduled maintenance is excluded from these conditions and will not be considered for service credit calculations. Scheduled maintenance is defined as maintenance that is announced at least 2 days in advance, and does not exceed one hour in any month. Typically, scheduled maintenance occurs in off-peak hours (usually in the early morning).
Service credits will be calculated as a percentage of the bill for the billing cycle that the unavailability occurred. The percentage for the credit will be calculated by dividing the number of minutes of unavailability by the total number of minutes in that billing cycle. THE CUSTOMER MUST REQUEST SERVICE CREDITS WITHIN 7 DAYS OF THE UNAVAILABILITY OCCURRING.
Your Responsibilities in Website Security
We employ basic WordPress security techniques when building your website. However, studies have shown that one of the most common ways that hackers gain access to your website is through keylogging programs installed on the infected computers of users. You agree to protect any computer that will log into the website by:
- Installing and maintaining updated security software
- Using the most up-to-date version of your preferred web browser
- Keeping the operating system patched with recommended updates
- Keeping versions of other installed software up to date if they are installed.
You also agree to use a strong password (as shown by the WordPress password indicator) for any account you use to log in and edit your website, and that this password will only be used on your website. We recommend the use of a password manager so that you have strong unique passwords for every site you access.
From time to time, our clients might employ a third party (such as but not limited to a Search Engine Optimization professional, social media professional, or content writer) whose services involve modifications to the website. WE CANNOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE WORK OF A THIRD PARTY. Should our services be necessary due to any work performed by a third party, these services are billable at our current hourly rate.
OUR WEBSITE MAINTENANCE PLANS DO NOT COVER WORK NECESSARY DUE TO ACTIONS PERFORMED BY A THIRD PARTY. SHOULD OUR SERVICES BE NECESSARY DUE TO ANY WORK PERFORMED BY A THIRD PARTY, THESE SERVICES ARE BILLABLE AT OUR CURRENT HOURLY RATE.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
If we build your website, we guarantee that your site will be able to be indexed by search engines like Google and others at the time of launch. Additional SEO services are not included in your project unless specifically itemized in the proposal of services. Your ranking and placement search engines depend on a myriad of factors. WE CANNOT GUARANTEE RANKING OR PLACEMENT ON ANY SEARCH ENGINE.
Website Accessibility and Compliance
If laws require that your website is accessible to users with disabilities, or if you desire for it to be, it is your responsibility to inform us of this requirement.
If your website or any associated data must meet compliance requirements of any kind for any entity, organization, or regulatory body (such as but not limited to HIPAA, FERPA, etc.), it is your responsibility to inform us of the specific compliance requirements involved.
WE DO NOT GUARANTEE TO MEET ANY COMPLIANCE FOR ACCESSIBILITY OR OTHER REQUIREMENTS UNLESS WE HAVE EXPLICITLY AGREED IN WRITING TO DO SO.
Legal Pages and Privacy Requirements
IT IS THE SOLE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE CLIENT TO DETERMINE WHETHER SUCH PAGES ARE REQUIRED. It is advisable to consult an attorney to determine your responsibilities in this matter. Creation of the content for these legal pages is not included in the Proposal of Services for your new website unless specifically itemized. However, if you provide the content for these pages, we will typically add them at no additional cost.
IT IS THE SOLE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE CLIENT TO INFORM US THAT YOUR WEBSITE MUST BE COMPLIANT WITH ANY REGULATORY BODY such as but not limited to the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) or the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA). Compliance with regulations such as these will normally result in an additional charge.
We would be happy to assist you in configuring these pages for a flat rate.
Occasionally, your website will send email when certain events occur such as the completion of a contact form, sale of a product, update/reset of a user’s password, etc. These emails that are automatically generated by the WordPress system are often flagged as spam (or not delivered at all) by email providers like Google/Gmail, Microsoft, Yahoo and others.
SINCE WE CANNOT CONTROL THE RECEIPT OF EMAIL, WE CANNOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY EMAILS THAT WERE NOT DELIVERED TO THE CLIENT FOR ANY REASON.
IT IS THE CLIENT’S RESPONSIBILITY TO REGULARLY CHECK SPAM FOLDERS AND WEBSITE FORM AND ORDER INTERFACES FOR ANY NOTIFICATIONS THAT WERE NOT DELIVERED TO THE CLIENT’S INBOX.
WE DO NOT PROVIDE OR SUPPORT EMAIL SERVICE TO CLIENTS. We recommend consulting with an IT Professional about implementing third party services such as Google Apps and Microsoft Office 365.
Registering a domain name for your website and paying the accompanying annual registration fee is your responsibility. We can assist in the process of registration and connecting your domain name to the website if you desire. You can purchase your domain name for multiple years, or renew it annually at your discretion.
It is your responsibility to ensure that the credit card the domain registrar has on file for your domain registration is current for rebilling.
WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR SUSPENSION OR LOSS OF DOMAIN NAMES BECAUSE YOUR CARD COULD NOT BE BILLED OR FOR ANY OTHER REASON. Work needed as a result of domain expiration is billable at our current hourly rate.
From time to time we may utilize independent contractors to work on your project. Some of these contractors may work outside the United States. You agree not to directly contact or solicit contractors we use on your project for employment or contract work of any kind.
Disclosure to Law Enforcement
We will disclose information about our clients to law enforcement agencies without further consent or notification to the client upon lawful request from such agencies. We will cooperate fully with the legal requests of law enforcement agencies.
The Client agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Company, its subsidiaries, contractors, employees and affiliates and each of their respective directors, officers, employees, shareholders and agents (each an “Indemnified Party”) against any losses, claims, damages, liabilities, penalties, actions, proceedings, judgments, or any and all costs thereof (collectively, “Losses”) to which an Indemnified Party may become subject and which Losses arise out of, or relate to the Agreement, Client’s use of the Services, breach of any confidentiality obligation or any alleged infringement of any trademark, copyright, patent or other intellectual property right and will reimburse an Indemnified Party for all legal and other expenses, including reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred by such Indemnified Party, in connection with investigating, defending, or settling any Loss, whether or not in connection with pending or threatened litigation in which such Indemnified Party is a party.
Choice of Law and Forum
This Agreement, and any related Statements of Work, shall be construed in accordance with, and governed by, the laws of the State of North Carolina, USA without regards to Conflict of Law principles.
In the event of any dispute or disagreement with respect to the meaning, effect or interpretation of this Agreement or in the event of a claimed breach of this Agreement, the parties hereto agree that such dispute shall be determined through mediation. The parties will mutually select a mediator and share the cost of mediation equally. Unless otherwise mutually agreed, the location of the mediation will be in Lincoln County, North Carolina, USA. The parties agree to cooperate fully with the mediator in good faith in order to reach a mutually satisfactory resolution of the dispute.
If the dispute is not resolved within 60 days after it is referred to the mediator, either party has the option to litigate the dispute in a court of law located in Lincoln County, North Carolina, USA.
Refusal or Discontinuation of Service
We reserve the right to refuse, restrict or terminate service to any client for any reason.
Disclaimer of Warranty
We will perform our work in accordance with good industry practices and at the standard expected from a suitably qualified person with relevant experience. We cannot guarantee that our work will be error-free and so we cannot be liable to you or any third-party for damages, including lost profits, lost savings or other incidental, consequential or special damages, even if you’ve advised us of them.
THE COMPANY HEREBY DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, STATUTORY OR OTHERWISE, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, NON- INFRINGEMENT AND FITNESS FOR PARTICULAR PURPOSE. THE FOREGOING DOES NOT AFFECT ANY WARRANTIES WHICH CANNOT BE EXCLUDED OR LIMITED UNDER APPLICABLE LAW.
WE WILL NOT BE LIABLE FOR ANY LOSS OR DAMAGE CAUSED BY A DISTRIBUTED DENIAL-OF-SERVICE ATTACK, VIRUSES OR OTHER TECHNOLOGICALLY HARMFUL MATERIAL THAT MAY INFECT SERVER EQUIPMENT, COMPUTER PROGRAMS, DATA OR OTHER PROPRIETARY MATERIAL.
Limitation of Damages or Liability
IN NO EVENT WILL THE COLLECTIVE LIABILITY OF THE COMPANY, ITS AFFILIATES AND ITS LICENSORS, SERVICE PROVIDERS, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS BE LIABLE FOR DAMAGES OF ANY KIND, UNDER ANY LEGAL THEORY, FOR HARM CAUSED BY OR RELATED TO THE CUSTOMER'S SERVICES OR INABILITY TO UTILIZE THE SERVICES, INCLUDING ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PERSONAL INJURY, PAIN AND SUFFERING, EMOTIONAL DISTRESS, LOSS OF REVENUE, LOSS OF PROFITS, LOSS OF BUSINESS OR ANTICIPATED SAVINGS, LOSS OF USE, LOSS OF GOODWILL, LOSS OF DATA, AND WHETHER CAUSED BY TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE), BREACH OF CONTRACT OR OTHERWISE, EVEN IF FORESEEABLE.
THE FOREGOING DOES NOT AFFECT ANY LIABILITY WHICH CANNOT BE EXCLUDED OR LIMITED UNDER APPLICABLE LAW.
Notwithstanding anything else in this Master Services Agreement, the maximum aggregate liability of THE COMPANY any of its employees, agents, contractors or affiliates, under any theory of law should not exceed the amount of fees it has collected on the customer’s account in the last six months.
No part of this Agreement will be affected if any other part of it is held unenforceable or invalid.
The headings in this Agreement are inserted for convenience only and are not a part of this Agreement.
This Agreement, and any Proposals of Service attached, constitute the entire agreement and understanding of the parties with respect to the transactions contemplated hereby and supersedes any and all prior agreements and understandings relating to the subject matter hereof. This Agreement may not be waived, assigned, extended, amended, supplemented or modified orally, but only by a written instrument signed by the party against whom enforcement of any such waiver, assignment, extension, amendment, supplement or modification is sought.
This Agreement may not be changed or modified except in writing signed by all involved parties.
The parties acknowledge and agree that they have read, understood and have actively negotiated the terms of this Agreement, participated in its drafting and have been represented by legal counsel. Therefore, this Agreement shall not be deemed to be the product of either party and shall not be enforced or interpreted any more stringently or strictly against either party.
Neither the Company nor the Client may assign this Agreement without the prior consent of the other.
Please complete the form and check the box below to approve this contract, signifying that:
- You have read, understood, and agreed to this Master Services Agreement
- That this Master Services Agreement and the Proposal of Services documents comprise our entire agreement.
- That you agree that this document governs your working relationship with us.