BDSM Contracts largely serve to record the parties’ intentions as opposed to being an enforceable means of voluntary slavery. In all jurisdictions, the terms of such contracts will be unenforceable. That means, if a slave no longer wishes to serve, Master or Mistress will not have any rights in a Court of law to force the slave to perform. This is so even if the Contract states that the slave has relinquished all rights including the right to terminate the arrangement. So, if your purpose of entering into a BDSM Contract is to ensure your slave or sub obeys forever, no document can offer you this protection.

The point of drawing up the document is more to clarify the rights, responsibilities and boundaries of the relationship, so each of you know where you stand and what’s expected. This is important in any relationship, but is even more crucial in BDSM arrangements for the mental and physical safety of the participants.

A BDSM Contract can serve as evidence of what acts were consented to. However, if the acts are illegal regardless of consent, then the Contract can also work against you because it provides more proof that you may have actually engaged in those activities.

Also, just because certain acts were consented to in the Contract that doesn’t necessarily prove you had consent at the time . For example, consent to a legal sexual activity under a BDSM Contract doesn’t prove that there was consent at the time because an individual has the right to withdraw consent at any time (regardless of whether the Contract states that consent is irrevocable). Therefore, waving a BDSM contract in defense of rape or abuse charges may not save you.

So where does this leave you? If you are entering into a BDSM relationship, you should still have some kind of agreement. A formal contract, although not binding, can best identify the parties expectations. It should show what you morally expect from one another based on your mutual trust for one another. You should still be aware of the laws which apply in your jurisdiction . If any acts are illegal (for example spanking), then legally you should refrain from participating in such activities and they should also not be mentioned in your Contract.