First, let me start off by saying, “Congratulations”. If you’re a coach and you’re reading this, I’m guessing you’re now at a point in your business that you are thinking about hiring a VA for your coaching business for some additional support - and a VA is a great choice!
Handing parts of your business over to a VA can be a daunting prospect. You may be worried about the privacy of your data and your Clients data; what type of contract you need; and what you need to include to ensure that you and your coaching business is protected.
I’m going to share with you 4 things you will need in writing if you use a VA in your coaching business (in fact, these 4 things will apply to any third party service providers that you use).
If you use a VA or any third party service providers to create intellectual property in your business
[This is an absolutely crucial point that will give you complete peace of mind and protection].
If your VA or any other third party service provider creates things like graphics, copy for your website or any materials and images, then unless you have it in writing, the intellectual property won’t get transferred to you - it will stay with the VA. So it’s essential to get this in writing, in a written contract with your VA or, third party services provider.
If your VA or third party service provider has access to your clients’ personal data
You are doing amazing work for your coaching clients and much of it will be very sensitive . So you’ll want to make sure that all personal data is kept safe and protected.
So, if your VA is gathering any data in relation to them or staying in touch with them, then it’s super important that you have certain specific provisions in your written contract as specified by GDPR - otherwise you’ll be breaching your GDPR obligations. This is a legal obligation! .
If HMRC decide that your VA is an employee - you could be on the hook for additional tax
No matter what you call somebody when you have an independent consultant, or services provider for your coaching business - if at some point in the future, the relevant tax authority, decides that your VA is an employee, then you could be on the hook for additional tax. I strongly recommend you have something in writing to ensure if that happens, your VA will compensate you for any losses you suffer.
Bringing CLARITY between you and your VA
Having clarity from the offset with your VA will ensure that the relationship stays positive and flourishes. Mostly, if things break down in a commercial relationship - it’s not because of bad intention - it’s because there’s a lack of understanding and mixed messages.
So be sure to get that clarity by having a written agreement in place.
In the Legal Hub for Coaches we have all the documents you need to protect your business when you're working with a VA or outsourcing to other service providers. Find out more here.