Outsourcing refers to the practice of moving internal operations to an external third party. It allows companies or businesses that excel in a particular area to produce higher quality goods or services at a lower cost and, at the same time, allows your business to focus on what it is good at. There are many tasks which can be outsourced, some of the most common being:
- General administration
- Information Technology
Outsourcing agreements in Australia commonly take the form of services agreements. When hiring someone externally to perform this work, it is important that you have the requisite agreements to not only formalise the arrangement but also provide protections should anything go wrong.
There are no national laws that specifically regulate outsourcing transactions. However, there are laws that apply to commercial contracts generally and outsourcing transactions must comply with these laws. The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) is the relevant government body that oversees compliance with the Australian Prudential Standard CPS 231 (Outsourcing). It is also important to comply with any applicable employment legislation.
What Is An Outsourcing Lawyer?
An outsourcing lawyer will assist where a business looks to outsource their services or products to another company. It will usually include an extensive contract between the parties where the activities of the primary company are agreed to by a third party. A lawyer that works in this area is an expert in drafting agreements surrounding the exchange of services and payment. It may be something contracted overseas or domestically, depending on your needs, these lawyers have experience in dealing with parties from other countries.
As outsourcing means contracting to another country, it is therefore important to engage with a lawyer with international legal experience. An outsourcing lawyer understands the importance of outsourcing to a company as it can reduce expenses whilst reducing liability and increases your flexibility.
Why Do I Need An Outsourcing Lawyer?
If you are running or managing a business and are looking to reduce costs or export your processes to another party, it is best to engage with an outsourcing lawyer. These lawyers will not only create binding and effective agreements, but are experts in ways to improve your business. Their advice is the most effective way to improve your processes whilst reducing expenses and demands on your business caused by continuing your current services.
What Will An Outsourcing Lawyer Provide?
An outsourcing lawyer will give a rounded service, advising you on different aspects of your business whilst providing you with an effective and binding outsourcing agreement. If you are looking to outsource, a lawyer in this field can put what you want into an effective and appropriate contract. They will aim to adapt a straightforward approach to your matter ensuring your costs are reduced and liability is limited.
How Much Will An Outsourcing Lawyer Charge?
A lawyer with expertise in outsourcing will usually be expensive. The complexity of the contracts between parties means they are usually specific and therefore time consuming. Outsourcing lawyers like most business lawyers charge by the hour and costs will change depending on the level of outsourcing you are wishing to engage with. For this reason, foreign agreements will increase the cost of creating an agreement.
When you submit a quote through LawPath, we’ll source you quotes from a range of expert outsourcing lawyers. All of our lawyers work on a fixed-price basis, meaning you always know how much the process will cost.
Hourly Rates and Court Fees
The cost of an outsourcing lawyer will vary based on the scope of the work. Small issues likely to be addressed quickly will cost less. For matters that will need to go to the relevant Court or Tribunal, there may be additional fees involved, particularly as this work takes time. These types of matters may also involve obtaining documents and negotiating with the other party.
What Can An Outsourcing Lawyer Legally Charge?
Legal costs can rise very quickly, especially in litigation. However, this is sometimes hard to avoid when work is being done by a lawyer on an hourly basis. Where fixed-fees are not offered by the lawyer, you should expect to be invoiced on a monthly basis with a time period within which you are required to make payment. Lawyers are required to adhere to the rules outlined in the relevant acts. For example, in NSW and Victoria, this is the Legal Profession Uniform Law 2014. Lawyers who do not comply with these rules can face disciplinary action from the law society of their State.
Lawyers are required to provide to their clients a document called a ‘costs disclosure’ if your costs will be higher than $750.00. This document will outline how costs will be calculated in relation to your case. Also be mindful that costs are divided into ‘professional costs’ and ‘disbursements’, and you will be expected to pay for both. Professional costs are the costs of the actual work done by the lawyer, whilst disbursements cover incidentals such as court filing fees, telephone calls, photocopying charges – amongst other things.
What If I Don’t Agree With The Costs?
You have the right to request an itemised bill that will outline how much time was spent on each task in relation to your matter, and how this adds up to the fee you’re requested to pay. If you wish to dispute the cost, you can make a complaint to the The Office of the Legal Services Commissioner (OLSC) and they will investigate the matter and may allocate a costs assessor. You can also take further legal action in the Courts if you feel you have been unfairly charged.