The purpose of these Terms and Conditions is to provide fair and reasonable services that are mutually beneficial. If at any time you think that Ward Design Group is not being fair or reasonable, feel free to bring it up and discuss your concerns.
Ward Design Group strives to be a very responsive support team for our clients. Our goal is to give you the absolute best in service and care. To give you the best service, we ask that you follow a few professional boundaries. Our primary communication will be via email so there is a written record in which to review any web issues.
As a general practice, emails will get prompt attention during the work week, M-F. Keep in mind that all web accounts are still monitored 24 hours a day so if something needed your attention, our systems would catch it and alert us, even after hours and on weekends. Client-to-team communication by phone should be via business phone, not team members’ personal phones, particularly after hours and weekends. An occasional text may be ok, during regular business hours, using business phone numbers, but the preferred method of communication is email.
Edits and Revisions:
Although most web edits and revisions are handled quickly, our stated default deadline for edits is 4 business days to turn around. There are many factors that go into how soon we can get your edit completed, including but not limited to; available staff, the current workload of previous projects, the order in which your request was submitted, and the urgency of the requested edit. If your edit is critical to you regarding the timeline, PLEASE let us know upfront, and as always, we will do everything we can to accommodate your request as quickly as we can.
Domain names are the possession of the client. For ease of management, the primary owner name of these domains is “Ward Design Group” or (Ward Media Group - our parent company). This is not claiming ownership, only management. Domain names always stay with the client if the client pays to keep the name up to date (see SEPARATION & REFUNDS, DEPOSITS).
Domain names are renewed and paid annually on the 1st of December. The current renewal rate for a domain name and associated zone file is $35. Any client who uses a domain name that is managed outside of Ward Design Group is fully and solely responsible for the renewal and associated fees. Ward Design Group carries no responsibility for renewing a domain name registry at outside entities. (GoDaddy, Web.com, Registry.com are just a few examples)
Important note: The plugin uses the settings specified in the WordPress website to deliver the emails. It is strongly recommended to use a "from" email address that belongs to the website domain name, for example, if your website is http://www.sample-website.com then use an email address like firstname.lastname@example.org, this will help to skip a lot of anti-spam restrictions. Avoid using emails like "...@gmail.com", "...@hotmail.com", and "...@aol.com" as "from" addresses since these are identified as originating at external servers and reach the spam folder or are completely blocked. This isn't a mandatory requirement but it is strongly recommended.
You are provided with the opportunity to approve a draft prior to publishing the website/print material. When you reply that the material is accurate and to your liking and ready to move forward, you are assuming the responsibility for any further changes/revisions. Once a site is launched, it is an agreement that you are fully satisfied with the work, and agree to the BILLING terms stated below.
Ward Design Group strives to be affordable based on current market rates for our services. All billable work will be given an estimate prior to commencement. Check your agreement with us, your plan will be in that agreement. Each plan has a designated amount of time that we can give for edits, consultations, etc. Any overage of that allotted time will be billed at our current rate of $125 per hour, at quarter-hour increments. There are no rollover minutes.
Every step of our process is dedicated to creating a site consistent with the wants of our clients. We invest valuable staff time in creating something that we will all be very happy with and proud of. This process is a labor-intensive process but they are labors of love. The deposit you pay is an investment into our vision for you and your business. We hold our portfolio of clientele as a firm merit to the capabilities and creative prowess of that investment. The time for that creation is reflected in the initial deposit. If we are unable to agree on this vision following several attempts, we waive the balance of the cost to you, but the deposit is kept by Ward Design Group to cover the cost of labor.
All payments are deemed earned when paid and are not reimbursable. Any payment beyond 10 days is considered late and is subject to a late fee of $25. Any ongoing service that doesn’t get the payment within 60 days is subject to suspension (both website and emails). Once suspended, payment in full is required to reinstate services and is subject to a reinstatement fee of $150. Once suspended, if payment is not made within 90 days, Ward Design Group retains the right to claim ownership of all intellectual property including and not limited to all domain names and associated email accounts and associated documents. In addition, once suspended, if the suspended client wishes to receive a full backup copy of the website, as well as access to their domain names, they will need to make payment in full, plus a $150 fee. Once their account is paid in full plus the $150 suspension fee, Ward Design Group will deliver a full backup copy of the website via email. Their domain name/s will be unlocked, and a domain name transfer code will be emailed to them. Transferring those domain names remains the responsibility of the suspended client, and/or their new web host.
Our monthly Managed Hosting prices are set at the time of our initial agreement. These prices are set for the mutual benefit of both parties. These monthly rates are subject to review at the end of every year, and these amounts are subject to increases and/or decreases, again, for mutual benefit.
If the card on your account fails to run on the previously agreed dates, your account is subject to a $45 NSF fee. If your account continues to be in arrears at the 60-day mark, you will be charged an additional $45 NSF fee. If your account is still in arrears at 90 days, your account is then subject to being suspended. Once suspended, payment in full is required to reinstate services and is subject to an additional reinstatement fee of $150. Once suspended, if payment is not made within the following 30 days, in full, Ward Design Group retains the right to claim ownership of all intellectual property including and not limited to all domain names and associated email accounts and associated documents. In addition, once suspended, if the suspended client wishes to receive a full backup copy of the website, as well as access to their domain names, they will need to make payment in full, including all NSF fees as well as the $150 suspension fee.
Ward Design Group reserves the right to choose clients – we reserved the right to do business with whomever we want. We also reserve the right to stop doing business with a person or organization if reconciliation is not achieved following the conflict.
If at any time there is a complaint or problem in which you feel that you want a refund and cancellation of this contract, let us know. The process is as follows: Contact our office via email expressing your concerns, giving us a fair opportunity to make corrections as needed to keep you satisfied. If after 30 days of written and verbal concerns, you are still not satisfied, we will agree to go into mediation with a third party to come to mutual satisfaction.
As we hope that we can work together for a very long time, things do happen, and separation occurs. If this should happen after the first 12 months of our agreement, both parties, Ward Design Group, and the Client agrees to separate professionally and civilly. Any web work, either design or social, is the property of you, the client*. We do not hold anything, hostage. We will gladly give you a full backup of all work, design, web, photos, videos, etc. for you to have hosted and managed elsewhere. Your domain name will be unlocked and ready to transfer to your possession or the possession of your new web company. If, or when this occurs, both parties agree to handle such separation within 30 days of a written request, preferably by email. The newly incoming web host will assume all responsibility to set up a new account, migrate all files, and initiate domain transfers. Once Ward Design receives written notice of cancellation, there will be one final billing. You and your new web host will have up to 30 days to handle the move. If you need more than 30 days to affect the move, you are subject to additional monthly billings. There are no prorated invoices. This next section (EARLY SEPARATION) spells out the consequences of canceling early (within 12 months)
Ward Design Group does not hold any client to a long-term contract. New web clients do agree to a 12-month minimum commitment with us, and if for any reason any client wishes to cancel their agreement within the first 12 months of our initial agreement, the client will be invoiced the remaining 12 months of the agreed-upon monthly retainer. In addition, if a client chooses to leave within the first 12 months of our initial agreement, all the work, design, and web, will be handed over to the client, after the final bill of the remaining 12 months is paid in full.
Ward Design Group retains the right to claim ownership of all software licenses purchased during the time that Ward Design Group hosted your website. This includes, but is not limited to, licenses for themes, plugins, add-ons, etc. If a client moves to a new host company, the new host company will assume responsibility to get everything re-licensed themselves and maintain those licenses on your behalf.
Ward Design Group retains the right to claim ownership of all digital assets and intellectual property including associated domain names, email accounts, and associated documents if a client refuses to pay for their site and/or domain names beyond 90 days.
* For domain names and sites to be unlocked for transfer, all balances must be 100% paid up to date. If the client has been suspended, there is an additional $150 suspension fee that will be due prior to having their domain names unlocked.
Rights to Material:
You represent and warrant that you have full and unencumbered rights to photographs, charts, graphics, text, and every other type of material you provide to Ward Media Group for posting or publication on a website or any other media. The rights include, without limitations, the right to hold, use, protect, publish, and exploit that material, so that publication will not infringe upon or violate any third party’s trademark, service mark, trade name, logo, copyright, or other intellectual property or right to use the same, and that you obtained the consent of any third party whose consent is necessary for publication.
For all terms and conditions below, the “Parties” refer to you and Ward Media Group, and “Agreement” refers to the agreement between the Parties pursuant to which Ward Media Group is performing work for you.
In the event of Legal Proceedings between you and Ward Media Group, the prevailing Party will recover all its Expenses from the non-prevailing party. For purposes of this provision, (i) “Legal Proceedings” means any form of legal process, including but not limited to litigation or alternative dispute resolution, arising out of or related to this Agreement, and (ii) “Expenses” includes attorneys' fees and other costs arising out of or related to Legal Proceedings, including pre-litigation expenses and those attorneys’ fees and costs incurred after judgment for collection, on appeal, or in any other subsequent proceeding.
In no event may Ward Media Group be liable for any damages whatsoever, whether direct, indirect, special, incidental, or consequential, above and beyond the amount you paid Ward Media Group in the 12 months preceding any claim.
You agree to hold Ward Media Group harmless from any claim, demand, or cause of action, by whomever and wherever brought, that arises out of or is in any way related to Ward Media Group’s work for you; and to indemnify Ward Media Group for any expense or cost, including attorneys’ fees, imposed on or incurred by Ward Media Group as a result of any such claim, demand or cause of action.
This Agreement is governed by Florida law. Any litigation arising out of or related to this Agreement will be heard by such Court in and for St. Johns County as has jurisdiction, and the Parties hereby subject themselves to that Court’s jurisdiction.
If any Court should hold or find any of the terms of this Agreement void or voidable, such a finding will not affect the enforcement or validity of the remainder of this Agreement.
The Parties represent and warrant that they are not relying on any promises or representations that do not appear written in this Agreement. The Parties acknowledge that they have read this Agreement, that they understand its terms, and that they agree to be bound by it. In the event an ambiguity arises, this Agreement will be construed as if drafted jointly, and no presumption or burden of proof may arise favoring or disfavoring either party by virtue of authorship. Where the context so indicates or requires, the singular includes the plural, the plural the singular, and the use of any gender is applicable to all genders. The captions in this Agreement are for convenience only and are not a part of this Agreement. Where necessary to enforce the Parties’ intent under this Agreement, its provisions are meant to survive its termination. This Agreement may not be amended except by a written agreement signed by both Parties.
This Agreement may be executed in any number of counterparts, each of which will be deemed to be an original, and all of which together constitute one and the same instrument. Signatures transmitted by facsimile or digital scan will be deemed original signatures.