Legal, Tax, and Accounting May 7, 2020

Ask IH: How much time do you spend on your Terms and Privacy Policy?

gatleon @gatleon

Terms of Service and Privacy Policy require some time. How much time do you a lot? Do you use a service to generate each? Is there a better way? Do you consult a lawyer? Is it necessary to consult a lawyer?

  1. 1

    You should have both in any case. Whether by a service or by a lawyer, it depends on your project.
    As s2imon commented, some industries are heavily regulated and it would be better to get a tailored ToS/Privacy Policy. But for a side project such as productivity app, health and fitness website, or the likes, an online generator would do the job.
    Regarding the privacy policy, keep in mind that if you collect and process data, you may need to collect consent from users and keep records of it. That may require using services by a consent management platform.
    Again, it all depends on your business/project, which I have no information about.

  2. 1

    There are some clear red flags for services at which moment they should seek the help of lawyer in any case:

    • financial services
    • health related services
    • when you're dealing with sensitive personal data
    • other heavily regulated industries in general, you get the idea

    so much for the "necessary" part of your question. When it comes to the time spent on it I think it's fair to say that in the beginning you'll get away with little time spent on it and the bigger you get, the more time you need to invest. It's just natural: you'll deal with more data, by more people and your business model might be more complex and spill over into the terms side of things.
    However it's definitely good to think about it from the beginning and in doubt not collect data if you don't need it (also definitely encouraged by GDPR for instance).

    Personally, I set up a privacy policy for any project that collects personal data, terms are usually only important a little later (depends though).

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