How do Variable elements work?

Variables are dynamic placeholders embedded in a template to hold space for information that changes in each new contract. 

This article explains Variables. Click here to read about Parties.

For example, most contracts have an effective date, which could be set up as a Variable. Here is what an "effective date" Variable looks like embedded in template text:

Outlaw - Demo Corp SaaS Services Agreement 2022-04-07 at 3.50.21 PM

Once embedded like this, the "effective date" Variable appears in any contract generated from this template as a fill-able field:

Do I have to create Variables?

No, but they have significant benefits over just leaving static blanks to fill in:

  • When drafting a contract, Outlaw knows whether a Variable still needs to be filled in, so it won't let you accidentally send or sign an agreement before completion.

  • Variables are needed to enable advanced features like conditional sections.

  • Images and Tables must be added as Variables.

Create a New Variable Element

Using your keyboard:

Start by typing [# ... and follow prompts:

Using the sidebar:

Click the "Variable" icon to name and format a new Variable:

Variable ID

Is how this Variable will show up in the template (as shown at the beginning of this article). The second box, Display Name, is how this Variable will render in a newly-generated Contract.

PRO-TIP:  click the "Preview" icon to toggle back and forth between template view and contract view, to see how Display Names look in a contract:


In the type dropdown, select the variable type:

(Variable) Type




All characters

Basic form of variable


Valid date format

Renders a date Learn more


Numbers only

Basic form of variable however characters are restricted to numbers only


Numbers only

Restricted to number characters. $ is prepended to variable value, e.g., $10,000.00


Numbers only

Restricted to number characters. % is appended to variable value, e.g., 100%


Names of list options

Define a set of possible responses


Images only (JPG, PNG)

Allows the embedding of an image file. Learn more


Names of table columns

Renders rows according to table columns set in variable Learn more

Empty placeholder

You can leave instructions here about how to fill in this Variable. This field is optional.

Module Flow 2022-04-07 at 5.36.52 PM

Default value

Lets you select a common response to auto-fill as soon as a new contract is generated. Learn more.

Assigned Party

Refers to who may fill in this Variable. The default "Unassigned" means anyone with editing permission can fill it in. If the contract Owner (the user who generated the contract) will fill in this Variable, use the default. If someone else will fill it in, "assign" it to that individual by selecting their Party from the drop down list:

Did this answer your question?