Free Memorandum of Understanding templates (Australia)

Here's how to draft a high-quality Memorandum of Understanding using this invaluable information.

Updated

Fact checked

Lawpath - Memorandum of understanding

Lawpath - Memorandum of understanding logo

Download

the following template

  • Memorandum of understanding
  • Your first template is free
Get Template

We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!

If you're struggling to get your head around exactly what a Memorandum of Understanding is, this expert guide is here to help.

We've cut through all of the legal jargon, so you'll know exactly how to write up a MOU and when you may need to use it.

What is a Memorandum of Understanding?

A Memorandum of Understanding, sometimes referred to as an MOU, is typically used as a preliminary written agreement before a formal contract is drawn up between parties. While it isn't a legally binding document, it can be used during the negotiation stage to express a common understanding and vision between the two sides involved.

Once drafted and signed, a Memorandum of Understanding can be used as a reference guide as negotiations continue and the parties work towards a final agreement.

memorandum of understanding template from Lawpath

Download this template at Lawpath

When should I use a Memorandum of Understanding?

Generally speaking, a Memorandum of Understanding is useful in two circumstances:

  • When parties are working towards a common goal, have a high level of trust, and don't want to form legal relations;
  • When parties are in negotiation with each other and want to outline common goals before organizing a legally-binding, formal contract.

Memorandum of Understanding vs Letter of Intent

A Memorandum of Understanding and a Letter of Intent serve very similar purposes: they are both used during the negotiation stage of a deal, in order to set out proposed terms going forward.

A Letter of Intent, however, is more commonly used than a MOU, and you'll generally find that most large business transactions use them to provide a structure as to how the agreement will go ahead.

Another key difference between the two documents is that a Letter of Intent can hold up in court as a legally binding document.

What does a Memorandum of Understanding include and not include?

As you'd expect, there's no 'one-size-fits-all' rule when it comes to a Memorandum of Understanding. The document should be tailored to each individual situation, and take into account the parties involved and the common goals they're working towards.

A few key points to consider when drafting your Memorandum of Understanding include:

  • Details of the parties entering into the MOU
  • An agreed start and end date
  • Objectives, goals and expected benefits from the arrangement
  • Roles and obligations of each party involved
  • Strategies for dealing with disputes that occur

How effective is a Memorandum of Understanding?

While a Memorandum of Understanding is not a legally binding document, it is still an effective tool to use between parties entering into negotiations. Typically, parties involved feel obliged to cooperate with the terms and conditions set out in the document. This is because failing to do so can harm their professional reputation.

A Memorandum of Understanding should also benefit both parties enough to encourage compliance from both sides.

Do I need a lawyer for a Memorandum of Understanding?

As a non-legally binding document, a lawyer is not strictly necessary to draw up a Memorandum of Understanding. However, it is always a good idea to use a Memorandum of Understanding template to ensure that you have included all of the appropriate information.

Asking a lawyer to look over the final document also adds a level of protection for both parties involved.

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product What's offered? Starting price to become a member Annual Fee from Any free legal documents?
Lawpath
Legal documents and templates, Access to lawyers, Legal guides, Legal advice
$79 per month (billed monthly)
Essentials: $288
You can view samples for free and you can create your first document for free.
Choose an annual plan from just $288 and get unlimited revisions to your legal or business documents. Plus, unlock exclusive partner offers.
LawDepot
Legal documents and templates, Access to lawyers, Legal guides, Legal advice
$7.99 per month (prepaid for one year)
$59.88
You can view samples for free and you can create your first document for free.
Get free legal documents in five to ten minutes.
Sprintlaw
Legal documents and templates, Access to lawyers, Legal guides, Legal advice
$699 (or choose a free template)
$699
Some documents are free to download. Get access to all documents with a membership.
Pick between a fixed-fee package from $99 and a 12-month plan that unlocks a host of membership benefits for $699.
Legal123
Legal123
Legal documents and templates, Access to lawyers, Legal guides, Legal advice
Varies per template
N/A
No
Get legal templates for any business type in Australia.
LegalVision
Legal documents and templates, Access to lawyers, Legal guides, Legal advice
$199 per month (bill monthly)
N/A
Some documents are free to download. Get access to all documents with a membership.
Your business can take advantage of unlimited lawyer consultations, fast turnaround times and free legal templates with LegalVision.
Law Central
Law Central
Legal documents and templates, Legal guides, Legal advice
Free for the Silver membership
Gold: $99
You can view samples and create your own document for free with the Silver membership.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

How do I write a Memorandum of Understanding?

A Memorandum of Understanding does not need to be more than a few pages long. It should only document essential information that both parties should know to move forward with their partnership.

While every MOU is unique, each one should provide answers to the following questions

  • What is the intention of the parties in the agreement?
  • What are the specific responsibilities of the parties?
  • When will the partnership start and end?
  • Are there any disclaimers to consider?
  • Who will foot the bill financially?

Once written, the Memorandum of Understanding should be signed by all parties involved, preferably in front of an independent witness.

The usefulness of a Memorandum of Understanding should not be underestimated. Using a template or following an example, is a great way to make sure you're along the right lines when it comes to drafting your MOU.

  • Lawpath. A handy online marketplace, featuring legal advice and templates including a Memorandum of Understanding example to browse. To customise and download the template, you'll need to pay a one-time fee.
  • Not-for-profit Law. Receive legal advice and a simplified Memorandum of Understanding template at no cost to you.
  • LegalVision. Access unlimited legal templates for a monthly membership fee or buy a MOU template for a one-time fee.
  • Wonder.Legal. A great resource with hundreds of legal templates. These include a Memorandum of Understanding template that can be downloaded and customized for $29.99.

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Go to site