Where are our mobile optimised contracts?

We’re constantly glued to our mobile phones around the world.

I love that I can have my phone (fully charged) and be entertained or work or research easily from almost anywhere.

So why haven’t we optimised contracts for our mobiles yet? 


After listening to the Legal Toolkit‘s latest episode on Bitcoins, Blockchains and Smart Contracts and then watching Tom Hulme‘s excellent TED Talk on why shortcuts are important for user design, I wondered why we are still struggling with outdated, A4 sized contracts and unformatted, neverending terms of use.

Surely there is a happy medium between the two extremes.

If we were to redesign a contract for today’s world, what would it look like?

Some ideas…


  • Clickable icons near headings
  • Automatic, independent built in language translation option


  • A video summary as an introduction
  • Smart definitions which make the clause relay run for you with clever pop ups
  • Digital signatures, cheap and easy to apply, for all individuals (this is not a fantasy, see Latvia’s attitude to electronic signatures here)


  • Option to do calculations for different situations based on figures in contract
  • Clever search function with spellcheck and suggestions


  • The ability to video chat in real time with an independent legal advisor if you have questions (similar to Nurse-On-Call)
  • A map to find the different parts of the contract


  • Plain language
  • Auto-formatting for mobiles and different screen sizes


  • Security features to prevent unauthorised reading, copying or printing
  • Mission Impossible style self-destruct feature for time sensitive offers and documents


  • Visualisation of complex concepts in tables, timelines, flowcharts and decision trees
  • Animated examples of real world applications of clauses (such as breach, delivery or commission payments)


What would your contract of the future have?

How would you redesign contracts to be more user focused?


Posted in Contracts, Legal Tech, Legal Visuals, New Law, Plain Language, Visual Contracts and tagged , , , , , , , .

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