These terms and conditions are designed to help you understand the editing and proofreading process, and what is required during the various stages of the project. By engaging Michelle Higgs to edit or proofread your project, you agree to the following terms and conditions:


All work will be carried out by qualified editor/proofreader Michelle Higgs. I do not subcontract to anyone else. I confirm that I am self-employed, I am responsible for my own income tax and National Insurance contributions, and I am not VAT-registered.

Prior to commencement of the editing or proofreading work, you and I will agree, in writing (including email), the terms of the project:

  • the medium in which the editing or proofreading will be carried out (e.g. in Word, on PDF)
  • how the material will be annotated (e.g. Track Changes in Word, Comments in Adobe Acrobat DC)
  • the length of time required to complete the project, as advised by me
  • a fee for the project, based on a quotation supplied by me, in writing (including email), following my evaluation of the material to be proofread/edited and the time frame required to complete the job
  • the date by which the material will be delivered by you to me
  • the latest date by which the completed project will be returned, following my advice to you



A fee for the project will be agreed before work begins, based on the document or word count that you supply. Should extra material be added by you, either before work starts or during the editing or proofreading process, a separate price for that will be negotiated.

Please note: if, on receipt of the project to be worked on (or at an early stage), it becomes apparent that significantly more work is required than had been anticipated in the preliminary discussion/brief or from the sample supplied, I may renegotiate the fee and/or the deadline, or decline to carry out the work.

Unless otherwise agreed, the fee quoted is for one pass of a manuscript. Additional passes are new projects, the terms of which will be agreed separately.  The fees for editing and proofreading do not include fact-checking; it is the author's responsibility to check that facts are correct.

Please note: for new customers, I request a non-refundable 25% deposit when you commission me to undertake the work.



When you commission me to edit or proofread your material, I will allocate a slot in my schedule to your project. This may be several months ahead, depending on my availability.

If the start date has to change because of a delay in delivering the material to me, I reserve the right to charge a ‘rush fee’ to meet the original deadline or to move the deadline. Please note that under these circumstances, it may not always be possible to meet the original deadline.

Both you and I have the right to terminate a contract for services at any time if there is a serious breach of its terms.
You are free to cancel a service for any reason by providing me with written notice (including email); I must acknowledge this cancellation in writing (including email) for this to be valid.
I may cancel a service at any time for any reason by providing written notice (including email). In the unlikely event that I cancel a service, I will provide a prorated refund of any overages of fees paid (including the deposit if you are a new customer).

If you cancel the work after the project has begun, I reserve the right to invoice for 100% of the agreed fee.
If you wish to cancel less than one month before the project begins, I reserve the right to invoice for 100% of the agreed fee.
​If you wish to cancel more than one month before the project begins, no fees will apply.

If, in the unlikely event, you experience extraordinary or difficult circumstances that cause cancellation or delay (e.g. family crisis, illness, bereavement), please contact me to discuss the terms of the cancellation policy. I always aim to be fair and helpful.
If, in the unlikely event, I experience extraordinary or difficult circumstances that cause cancellation or delay (e.g. family crisis, illness, bereavement), I will contact you in writing at the earliest opportunity and do my best to renegotiate the time frame of the project.


You will be sent the final invoice after you receive your edited or proofread manuscript; this invoice is to be paid within 30 days. For new customers, the 25% deposit will be deducted from the final invoice.

Under the terms of the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 (amended 2002 and 2013), I reserve the right to charge interest and compensation should payment exceed 30 days.

If you are dissatisfied with my work, please contact me and explain why so that I can try to rectify the situation. Please bear in mind that while I will always aim to return an error-free document, perfection is impossible to achieve. Please make sure that you read through the final version yourself and check you are happy with it before publishing.

While I will endeavour to point out any potential legal issues, the author is responsible for ensuring that the material is appropriate for publication and I can accept no liability for any action raised as a result of incorrect or defamatory material.

I may use your name and link to your book’s sales page on my website and social media. If you do not want me to do this, please let me know.

Please be assured that your work will be kept confidential. I will keep a backup copy of your work (unless asked otherwise), both original and edited, for at least six months securely in case of failure with your own system.