Clubs will have a number of contracts they are responsible for exectuting.
Common contracts within club land include:
- Coach contracts
- Player contracts
- Employment contracts
- Member Contracts / Terms and Conditions
- Sponsorship contracts
- Affiliation contracts
- MOU/Joint Ventures with other clubs
- Code of Conduct
- Supplier/Services contracts
- Facility leasing contracts
What is a contract?
A contract is an agreement between two or more parties based on the acceptance of an offer which they intend to be legally binding. . The basic elements of a contract are contractual capacity, offer, consideration and acceptance, and intention.
Contractual capacity: not all persons can enter into a contract at law (eg, minors). Under the terms of the Minors (Property and Contract) Act 1970 (NSW) the age of majority is 18. As well, a contract entered into with someone who is unable, through mental disability, to understand the nature of the contract is voidable if one party should have known or did know of the other party’s mental disability or drunkenness. Note that mere drunkenness is no defence. State legislation in relation to mentally disabled persons entering into contracts generally provides for the appointment of a trustee or committee to manage the person’s affairs.
Offer, consideration and acceptance: an organisation may make an offer to a prospective coach: “Would you coach our team this season for $5000?” The $5000 is the consideration, it is the value of the offer. If the coach agrees, then that is the acceptance.
Intention: those involved in the contract must intend to create a legally binding agreement. A person may offhandedly say: “If you can do that, I will give you $1000” and both parties know that the offer is not intended to be serious. However, a legally enforceable contract exists if both parties intend to enforce the contract, for example the offer to a person to coach a team for a set fee. To alleviate contractual problems, many organisations have standard form contracts and these can be adapted for a particular situation.
The Australian Consumer Law provides protection from unfair terms. The law sets out examples of terms that may be unfair, including:
- terms that enable one party (but not another) to avoid or limit their obligations under the contract
- terms that enable one party (but not another) to terminate the contract
- terms that penalise one party (but not another) for breaching or terminating the contract
- terms that enable one party (but not another) to vary the terms of the contract.
For more information, visit the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission website.