Some photographers operate without written contracts and rely entirely upon verbal agreements. This can work well but does leave the agreement more open to interpretation and possible misunderstandings. The dates by which various payments should be made, the consequences of late payment or non-payment and other similar details, should all be included in the terms and conditions. However, it is important to make sure that the clients understand the extent and implications of what they have agreed.
Topics addressed by a typical contract include:
- the date, place and time of wedding;
- the names and addresses of both parties;
- the duration of the photographer's coverage and attendance;
- items included in the photography package, such as travelling costs, pre-wedding meetings, attendance at the wedding rehearsal, prints, on-line hosting of images, printed wedding albums and parent books, high resolution files on DVD, printed enlargements.
- the periods of the wedding day that will be covered;
- a list of essential images;
- the retainer payable;
- payment dates for the retainer and balance;
- the final price of all photography services;
- any special payment terms;
- Any particular agreed features of the coverage;
- cancellation terms - for photographer and clients;
- cancellation charges; and
- the signatures of the client and the photographer.