What is the use of general terms and conditions?

terms and conditions are more important than you think

What is the use of general terms and conditions?

General terms and conditions are of great importance to your organization. It is therefore not advisable to simply copy them from other websites. General terms and conditions lay down the rights and obligations between the parties involved. In this document, for example, the payment conditions, reflection period of the consumer, clauses in the sales price, etc.

Is it mandatory to have terms and conditions?

No, general terms and conditions are not mandatory by law. However, it is highly recommended that you have them. For example, are you drawing up a sales agreement, but do you have no general terms and conditions? Then the rights and obligations are only limited to the rules of the civil code and what has been agreed in the sales agreement. This can be disadvantageous, as the legal system is in some cases less effective for your situation. That is why it is wise to have tailor-made general terms and conditions made, as these are fully in line with your company.

How do you draw up general terms and conditions?

First of all, make sure that your terms and conditions are understandable, legible and clearly drafted. Is this not the case? Then the judge will give its own interpretation, which can be both positive and negative for you. In addition, the general terms and conditions must be drawn up in a language that the contracting partner speaks. Also, don’t forget to mention the important clauses. Consider, for example, clauses for the price, the reflection period, the legal guarantee, transport, applicable law, etc.

Do general terms and conditions automatically apply?

No, general terms and conditions are applicable and therefore mandatory. This means that two conditions must be met:

Your co-contractor must be informed of the presence of your general terms and conditions before the relevant contracts are concluded. There is only an exception for parties who do business with each other for longer. In that case, the general terms and conditions may also be shared and communicated after the contract has been concluded.
Your co-contract must have approved the terms and conditions. This must be done tacitly or explicitly. For example, by placing a signature at the bottom of the general terms and conditions or on a document that refers to this. Online you can use a check box with the text: “I accept the general terms and conditions”. Please note that you add a link to the general terms and conditions.

Avoid illegal clauses

General conditions must comply with the law. Illegal clauses are therefore prohibited. This is a provision that ensures that the rights and obligations between the parties are not balanced. Often with the aim of favoring their own party. Belgian law applies in this situation and will prohibit the clause.

An example from practice: the legal warranty period for a product with a defect is 2 years. Any clause that deviates from this and uses a shorter term is considered unlawful. The same applies to clauses that do not make it possible to indicate hidden defects. The consequence of an illegal clause is that it is declared null and void. The other rights and obligations from the general terms and conditions remain applicable.

Do you need help with your terms and conditions? Then contact EuroCollect.eu. We are happy to help you avoid unpleasant situations.

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