Anyone who visits this website or talks to me about freelance writing, editing, or tutoring is a “client.” My paid writing, editing, consulting, or instruction, as well as unpaid calls with prospective clients, are my “services.” Written creations, processes, and edited client files are “projects.” “Giveaway” refers to any contest or sweepstakes I run on this website or advertise on my social media.
Prior to beginning a project, I will provide the client with an invoice detailing the services, timeline for completion, and first payment owed. The client’s payment of the first invoice constitutes acceptance of these terms of service, and I will not begin work until the client accepts the terms. For online tutoring, the first payment or scheduled transaction of a recurring payment constitutes acceptance of these terms of service.
I outline my estimated schedule of completion and any applicable milestones in the first invoice. I tend to plan conservatively so I can stick to the agreed-upon schedule, and I will issue a refund if I fail to meet a deadline. For contractual purposes, “meeting a deadline” includes any reasonable, good-faith submission of a project draft to the client, even if the project is not in its final format or the client later requests edits that I agree to make. If a client requests a different schedule after I’ve begun working on a project, such as bumping up a deadline, any changes will constitute a new agreement with a potentially different payment due. I reserve the right to cancel a contract in extreme circumstances (like if I’m hospitalized), in which case I will refund all portions of the services not yet completed.
For online tutoring, clients will understand that I am not available 24/7, and I may not be able to offer a lesson at their preferred time. Similarly, if a client makes a short-notice request to reschedule a lesson, the client understands that I may have limited availability to reschedule.
Some aspects of my services are straightforward, such as proofreading and correcting formatting according to English language conventions, yet larger, developmental editing and content creation are art forms. I will provide samples and rough drafts as appropriate for each project, but clients are ultimately responsible for sharing any specifics about brand voice, tone, or stylistic preferences. If a client isn’t happy with my services, I’ll make every reasonable effort to remedy the situation before we move on to the next stage of the project.
When I finish, clients are responsible for reviewing the completed project documents within 14 days of receipt and alerting me of anything that still needs correcting. After that, I am not responsible for any errors that may be discovered, nor am I liable for any additional delays, costs, claims, or damages that arise from mistakes in the project document. Likewise, the client releases me from this agreement after a period of 14 days following the submission of the completed project document and may no longer request stylistic, content, organizational, or any other changes without first entering a new agreement, and such a new agreement will be at my sole discretion if offered. (For example, if a client approves a final project and then a month later asks me to update it, I may agree to do so, but the client understands that I am under no obligation. Depending on how extensive the update is, it may become a new project.) I am not responsible if a client neglects to read a document carefully before approving it and then after 14 days discovers a reason to request corrections.
Lastly, while this may be obvious, I cannot guarantee any degree of fame or financial success, including specific web traffic metrics or a desired number of conversions. I encourage all clients to have realistic expectations prior to hiring a freelancer.
Conflict of Interest and Refusal of Service:
If I feel unable to provide services to a project for any reason, I reserve the right to refuse or cancel work with a client. Any cancellation of a contract already begun will include a prompt and full refund for all services not yet completed. A previous agreement does not require or imply a future agreement.
I write and edit using Word (.docx) documents or Google Docs. I provide all feedback electronically using track changes or Google Docs suggestions and comments. A client’s stipulation that I use another word processing program may put the project out of scope such that I cannot accept it or that I must require a file conversion fee. I do not accept PDFs for editing assignments. Clients must provide an editable file format.
Corporate Authorship and Copyright Transfer:
If any project created for a client is statutorily considered a Work Made for Hire under United States copyright law (17 U.S.C. § 101), it will so be considered as a Work Made for Hire. If a client requires it, I will sign a copyright transfer to grant author copyright to the client of any written materials, and clients have the right to display their names as the authors of written content.
Moral Rights of Attribution and Ghostwriting:
I assert my moral rights of attribution as protected by US copyright law and longstanding international precedent. Practically, this means that I may publicly identify myself as the actual creator of a written work, even if the copyright of that work has been transferred. For example, the client may hold the copyright to promote, distribute, and monetize the content, but I can still list the piece as an example of my writing when speaking to prospective new clients and include links to it in my online portfolio, even if the client uses their own name in the byline.
The exception to this is ghostwriting only as defined by a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) with the client prior to the beginning of the project. In this case, I will make reference to my involvement with the project only according to the stipulations of the NDA. The majority of the freelance writing I do is not ghostwriting in this strict sense. Clients must specifically request an NDA for me to waive my moral rights of attribution.
Payment and Cancellation:
My policy is to collect payment before beginning services. In full transparency, I’m a one-man show and don’t have the capacity to chase down unpaid invoices or work at a deficit while awaiting payment. For larger projects, payments can come in installments at each milestone. I accept credit cards, ACH transfers, PayPal, and Venmo (USA bank accounts only). For recurring projects, I encourage clients to set up automated payments to ensure no delays in my continued services.
I will refund all money for services not yet completed if I cancel the contract; I will deduct a cancellation fee of 15% or $50, whichever is less, from the refund if a client cancels the contract after I’ve begun the work. Additionally, I reserve the right to deduct payment processing fees from the refunded amount, if applicable. If a client isn’t happy with a service, I’ll make every reasonable effort to address bona fide concerns, but under no circumstances will I issue a refund for work already completed. This is required in the agreement and non-negotiable.
For online tutoring, I require payment prior to beginning the first lesson. Subsequent lessons will be automatically charged to the card on file at the completion of the lesson. If the client does not wish to have a card on file for automatic payments, the client will be responsible for making payments prior to each lesson. If there is no card on file or the client does not make a payment within 24 hours of the scheduled time for a lesson, I reserve the right to cancel that lesson. There is no charge if the client cancels a lesson prior to its scheduled time, although I kindly ask for at least 48 hours’ notice of any lesson cancellations. If a client does not notify me of a cancellation prior to the scheduled lesson time (“no call, no show”) or misses some portion of the lesson due to their own technical difficulties or some other emergent conflict with the time, I do not offer a refund. In understanding this policy, the client remembers that I have already spent time and resources preparing for the tutoring session, and, as stated above, I am not able to issue a refund for work already completed.
All invoices are in US dollars. If clients elect to initiate payment in another currency, they will be responsible for any conversion fees charged by their financial institutions.
Clients are responsible for providing accurate contact and payment information. I will not issue a refund for any delay caused by a declined payment method, out-of-service phone number, or incorrect email address.
Severability and Enforcement:
If a court of law determines any part of this agreement unenforceable, this determination will not affect the validity or enforceability of the remaining clauses. Acceptance of these terms of service constitutes doing business in the State of Tennessee.
Confidentiality and Ownership of Submitted Materials:
By nature, editing services involve viewing unpublished material. Copyright belongs to the author the moment the work is created. I will never sell, share, excerpt, store publicly, or otherwise reproduce a client’s unpublished material without express, written consent. I reserve the right to share published materials in an online portfolio controlled by me according to the moral rights and attribution terms outlined above. (I will only link to articles in a portfolio, not reproduce the content, in order to support the client’s SEO efforts.)
Online Information Collection, Use, and Sharing:
Like most websites, JimmyLeonard.com collects non-personally-identifying information from web browsers and servers, including browser type, referring link or domain, language preference, Internet Protocol (IP) address, and time and date of visit. My purpose in collecting this data is to better understand why people visit the site and how they use it. I use some data analytics tools such as Google Analytics to view this data in aggregate and observe trends.
Some visitors to this website may choose to interact in a way that requires me to gather personally-identifying information, such as using a name and email address to send me a message. Additionally, sometimes the nature of an email contact involves a third-party-owned website or widget. I only share information with services that need to know it to process it on my behalf and have agreed not to share it with others. Some of these services may be located outside of a client’s home country, and by using this website, clients consent to transferring their data. Users may request to leave a mailing list or update their contact information at any time by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cookies and Affiliate Links:
Disclosure and Purpose:
I will sometimes share affiliate links in my blog post articles. An affiliate link is any link that refers a user to a retail or service website and tracks the user’s purchases on that site, issuing a small commission to JimmyLeonard.com as the referrer. These links have no additional cost to the user, and their primary purpose is to generate revenue to cover web hosting fees and other costs associated with managing this website. My main business is my freelance writing, editing, and tutoring services. With each post, my intention is to provide meaningful, thought-provoking, and entertaining content; affiliate opportunities are a secondary consideration, and I only include affiliate links to products or services that I believe are of a high quality and could benefit a significant portion of my readers. It is never my intention to “bait” users into clicking a link just for the sake of a commission, and I do not recommend products or services that I feel offer no value.
Support the Site:
Some users may wish to financially support my writing, podcast, or maintenance of this website by a means other than retaining my services or purchasing through an affiliate link. Users may securely donate through the links available at the bottom of blog posts or on the podcast page. These donations are akin to leaving cash in a tip jar; they are not tax-deductible, and JimmyLeonard.com is not a non-profit organization.
Thank you for your support!
Any giveaway of free or discounted editing services is available to anyone at least 18 years of age on the day of the giveaway entry. In cases of a physical prize, such as a hard copy book, entries are further limited to legal residents of the United States of America. All federal, state, and local taxes, fees, and surcharges are the sole responsibility of the prize winner.
Participating in a giveaway may involve sharing the entrant’s email address with sweepstakes entities for the purpose of administration and prize fulfillment. Automated or robotic entries submitted by individuals or organizations will be disqualified. The same entrant using multiple email addresses will also be disqualified at the sole discretion of the giveaway administrator.
Coupons for free or discounted services have no cash value. If the coupon is applied to a service valued at less than the advertised amount of the prize, the entrant will not receive a cash refund. Coupon expiration dates will be listed at the time of the award. In the event of a sweepstakes giveaway, the winner(s) of the giveaway will be selected in a random drawing from among all eligible entries received throughout the promotion period. In the event of a contest giveaway, the winner(s) will be selected by me or an appointed representative based on a judgment according to the stated contest criteria. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. Winners will be notified by email within two weeks of the drawing and must accept their prizes within 72 hours of notification. I am not responsible for any failure of the entrant to accept a prize within this timeframe.
Updates to Policy:
While most changes would likely be minor, I may update this policy at my sole discretion. A visitor’s continued use of this site constitutes acceptance of whatever current policy is posted. I encourage visitors to occasionally check back to review these terms.