Having a trained small business lawyer on your team is essential for any small business that is either starting out or already in business.
No matter the size of your business or how long you’ve been in operation, legal representation through a small business lawyer is a must. This is especially true if you are a small business that is just starting out. There are many technical decisions to make and legal work to be handled. This is not the time to feel your way around and end up making mistakes, as this can be very costly. Traditionally, hiring a lawyer up front so you have legal assistance right from the beginning is more cost effective than trying to fix mistakes you made later on. Legal actions that may look straightforward can often be more difficult than they seem.
There are many reasons that your business can benefit from a small business lawyer.
Select A Suitable Business Structure
Before your business is made official, you must put a business structure in place. You have many options to choose from such as going the route of sole proprietorship, starting a limited or incorporated company or even co-ops. A small business lawyer will help you understand and choose the correct path forwards. Your attorney will then also assist you in filling out the legal documents that are required and drawing up any terms that a partnership will be governed by. This will help stop disputes down the road and keep you on track to success.
Purchasing A Business That Is Already Operating
If you have found a business that you wish to purchase, a business lawyer is a valuable tool to help determine which route to go. Sometimes you may want to buy only the assets of a business or shares in a corporation. Any purchase requires a buy-sell agreement that is signed by both parties and puts in writing all obligations and demands and other agreement terms.
Starting a business usually means leasing office space for your center of operations. These leases can end up being one of your most costly expenses so choose wisely. In the future your business may expand or relocate, which means you will want to get out of your lease. This is where your lawyer can give advice before you sign a lease and help to smooth any transition down the road.
Contracts & Agreements
Drawing up legal contracts is an important part of a small business lawyer’s job.
You will require assistance for:
- Purchasing property
- Licensing agreements
- Franchise agreements
- Employment practices
- Taxation practices
- And more
There may be many other issues that arise where an experienced small business lawyer will be necessary for your business, such as
- Copyright claims
- Damage mitigation
- Business partner concerns
- Environmental issues
- Employee law
- Business closure
These are all very specialized legal processes and are best done by professionals so that no mistakes are made and the process runs smoothly.
Choosing A Small Business Lawyer
The best way to locate a good lawyer for your business is through the referral of someone you trust. Barring that you can do an online search for a lawyer in your area. As an example, if you were located in Ottawa, an appropriate search term would be “small business lawyer Ottawa”. You would then make a list of the results and proceed to have consultations until you find a lawyer that suits your needs. You can also expand your search to bar associations or law societies in Canada where lawyers are listed and often reviewed by the public and their peers. Finding the right small business lawyer for your company is not to be taken lightly and is a very important part of going into business.