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If you are a hairdresser, you should consider drafting a set of customer terms and conditions. Your terms and conditions will set out the rights and obligations of you and your clients. They should be clear, fair and easy for consumers to understand. This article will outline some of the common clauses in a hairdressing business’ terms and conditions. 

Acceptance

Your terms and conditions should start with an acceptance clause. This can be a simple sentence which states your customers accept these terms and conditions when they request the services your salon offers. 

Changes and Cancellations

If your customer changes an appointment, you can help avoid disputes by clearly stating in your terms and conditions that you cannot guarantee a certain time or particular hairdresser will be available for the rescheduled appointment. Alternatively, a disputes policy that addresses these situations could also help you deal with these clients. For cancellations, you may wish to indicate a notice period. 

For example, you could state that if a customer cancels within 24 hours, a cancellation fee will be:

  • charged to the customer’s credit card; or 
  • deducted from their deposit, if the customer has already made part payment. 

Unsatisfied Customers

There may be times when customers are not satisfied with the service you provided. Your terms and conditions should outline the procedure a customer can follow if they are unsatisfied with any of your services. This will help you to: 

  • resolve disputes easily; and 
  • maintain a good reputation. 

If a customer is not satisfied with their cut, colour or other hair service, you may wish to offer to redo the service at no extra cost. You may also choose to offer a refund if a customer is very dissatisfied. In any event, you must provide a refund or resupply your services in certain circumstances set out in the Australian Consumer Law.

For example, these circumstances include major or minor fault. You do not, however, need to give a refund for a change of mind. 

Consumer Guarantees

Your terms and conditions must comply with applicable laws. In particular, the Australian Consumer Law and consumer guarantees apply to any business which provides services to a consumer. In relation to services, a consumer guarantee is an assurance that when a customer purchases a service (or good), it will be provided with acceptable care and skill or technical knowledge. You cannot restrict, limit, exclude or modify consumer guarantees in a contract. If your business does not fulfil any of the guarantees, a consumer has a right to: 

  • a repair, replacement or refund; 

  • cancel a service; and 

  • compensation for damages and loss.

You need to state in your terms and conditions that your customers will be entitled to a refund or resupply if there is a fault or failure with the services that you provide. 

Limitation of Liability and Disclaimers

To protect your business, your terms and conditions can set out what you are not responsible (or ‘liable’ in legal terms) for. This is subject to the consumer guarantees, as discussed above. While you are expected to take all reasonable care when providing your services, you can exclude a number of circumstances where neither a refund nor repair will occur, such as: 

  • if the failure is due to the customer’s own mistake or negligence; or 

  • for any factors beyond your control.  

Unfair Contract Terms

The unfair contract laws in the Australian Consumer Law apply to: 

  • standard form consumer contracts, which the consumer cannot negotiate; and 

  • small business contracts. 

This would include terms and conditions for your hairdressing business. A term may be unfair, and therefore unenforceable, if it: 

  • causes a significant imbalance in the parties’ rights and obligations; 

  • is not reasonably necessary to protect your legitimate interests; and 

  • would cause detriment to a party if they relied on it. 

If a term were to be considered unfair by a court, it would be struck out and not apply in the contract. 

For example, if you cancel a customer’s pre-paid booking and your terms and conditions state that the customer is not allowed to receive a refund under any circumstance, the customer may be able to argue that the term is unfair under the ACL. 

Website Terms of Use

If your business has a website, you will need a website terms of use. These apply to every website visitor and will:

  • protect your website; and 

  • limit your liability for your website. 

Your website terms of use should claim your copyright and intellectual property rights and set out permissible and prohibited uses of your website.

For example, this could include that competitors cannot use your website information.

Privacy Policy

If you collect, use and disclose personal information from customers, including using the information for direct marketing, you need a privacy policy. The privacy policy is between you and each person that you collect personal information from. It sets out: 

  • what personal information your business collects; 

  • how this information is used; and 

  • under what circumstances the information will be disclosed to third parties. 

Key Takeaways

If you run a hairdressing business, it is important to have terms and conditions to:

  • set out the rights and obligations of your business and your customers; and 
  • protect your interests. 

A good commercial business lawyer can help you prepare terms and conditions which will protect and strengthen your business interests. If you need help drafting your terms and conditions, contact LegalVision’s contract lawyers on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page. 

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