What is a Terms and Conditions Agreement?

A terms and conditions agreement outlines the website administrator’s rules regarding user behavior, and provides information about the actions the website administrator can and will perform. Your terms and conditions text is a contract between your website and its users. In the event of a legal dispute, arbitrators will look to this agreement to determine whether each party acted within their rights.

Do Websites Need Terms and Conditions?

Terms and conditions are not required by law, but are extremely important to the long-term success and viability of your website.

Having website terms and conditions is considered standard business practice in the US, Canada, the UK, and just about everywhere else — from South Africa to Australia.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) — Europe’s strict privacy law that applies to companies worldwide with EU users — does not directly affect the terms and conditions of your website.

Although the GDPR doesn’t regulate what your terms and conditions must include, it mandates that you create a separate website privacy policy, as does the newly enacted California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). See our CCPA vs GDPR infographic to understand the differences between these two laws.