Everything you need to have a legally compliant website

LawPlus Solicitors | AIBF
Karl Hutchinson, Partner and Co-Founder of LawPlus Solicitors.

The design and launch of a website is an exciting time, says Karl Hutchinson of LawPlus Solicitors.

It tells your customers you have arrived and that you’re open for business.

But before you make that website live, Karl says businesses need to make sure that they have ticked off those all-important legal requirements, because while the internet might seem like the wild west – the long arm of the law still applies!

Law Plus Solicitors provide a pioneering subscription-based legal platform for small business owners.

They are the first and only firm in Ireland to provide this type of service for small businesses.

In the following article, Karl reveals everything you need to know to have a legally compliant website.

Over to you Karl…

Now some of your legal requirements are required by law; others are necessary to protect you and your business.

There are four of them:

Your website terms of use
Your cookies policy
Your privacy policy and
Your website terms and conditions

So, let’s take a closer look at each of them, starting with your website terms of use.

Your website terms of use are the terms on which your website visitors are permitted to use your site.

Now, though these are not legally required we always recommend that you put website terms of use in place.

And here’s why.

They cover topics such as how visitors access your website and what they are allowed to do while they’re there; they also allow you to limit your liability.

For example, you should include wording to exclude all of your liability for loss or damage arising out of or in connection with a visitor’s use of your site, or for their use of any of your content.

Karl Hutchinson and Clifford Sullivan of LawPlus Solicitors have been recognised as All-Star Master Practitioners by the All-Ireland Business Foundation.

If you have links to third-party websites, you’ll want to limit your liability so that you have no responsibility for the content of any of the websites that are linked.

You’ll also want to claim ownership rights of your content. And website terms of use allow you to do this.

So, website terms of use are important.

Then you have your cookies pop-up notice and policy.

Now this is a legal requirement so you must have one.

Your cookies pop-up notice is the short box of text which pops up when users visit your website – we’ve all seen them.

It should state that you’re using cookies on your site and ask visitors to accept this.

Generally, your pop-up notice will link to your cookies policy which provides more details on how you use cookies on your site, how your users may opt-out of the cookies or change their settings regarding cookies on your site.

So, these are a must-have.

And then there’s your website privacy policy.

Again, this is a legal requirement.

You must have your privacy policy on your website.

This tells individuals about how you collect, handle, store and potentially also share their personal data, why you are collecting it, and what you use their data for…

It also tells them about their rights under our data protection laws.

Finally, there’s your website terms and conditions.

Now many business owners think that website terms of use and website terms and conditions are the same thing, but they’re not.

Because website terms and conditions set the rules for how you trade from your website; while website terms of use set the rules for how visitors use your website.

Your terms and conditions will provide details about how: You’ll provide your customer with their order; Your payment terms and how they’ll pay; Your delivery times and they’ll also include details about:

What the customer should do if there is a fault and what happens if the customer changes their mind.

Of course, you’ll only require terms and conditions on your website if you are selling goods or services from your website.

And that’s it.

Now if this feels a bit on the burdensome side or an unwelcome interruption to your creative activities, fear not.

It’s actually all super easy as we’ve created all four of these documents for you.

You’ll find them in the website hub on our website at www.lawplus.ie

And the good news is that these 4 documents will really help to protect you if you ever run into a sticky website-related problem and ensure your compliance with your legal requirements.

Karl Hutchinson and Clifford Sullivan of LawPlus Solicitors have been recognised as All-Star Master Practitioners by the All-Ireland Business Foundation.

The honour recognises Karl & Clifford’s continued growth & development as nationally recognised experts in virtual legal services.

To learn more about LawPlus Solicitors, visit their All-Star showcase page here.