Time Locks and Delays

Implementing time locks and delays in smart contract upgrades is a critical security measure. It introduces a mandatory waiting period between when an upgrade is proposed and when it is executed. This window allows stakeholders to review and react to proposed changes, enhancing transparency and trust.

Purpose and Implementation

  • Prevent Rushed Upgrades: Ensures that upgrades undergo thorough scrutiny before implementation, reducing the risk of introducing vulnerabilities.
  • Community Involvement: Allows token holders or community members to voice concerns or objections to proposed upgrades.


  • Timelock Contracts: Deploy separate contracts that manage the scheduling of upgrades, requiring actions to be queued for a specific period.
  • Governance Proposals: Integrate time locks with DAO governance processes, where proposals must meet discussion and voting criteria before enactment.

Best Practices

  • Clear Communication: Announce planned upgrades well in advance, detailing the nature and rationale of the changes.
  • Emergency Overrides: While time locks enhance security, having a mechanism to expedite critical fixes in response to active threats or vulnerabilities is essential.


  • User Experience: Balancing the security benefits of time locks against potential impacts on user experience and upgrade agility.
  • Setting Appropriate Durations: Determining the optimal length for the delay period, balancing thorough review with the need for timely improvements.

Time locks and delays are indispensable for secure smart contract upgradeability, providing a safeguard against hasty changes while fostering an environment of open review and community engagement.