About 20% of new businesses fail during the first two years since opening. As you can see, keeping up with the ever-changing legal landscape as a small business owner is challenging.
New business owners who are just embarking on their professional journey may look at hiring a business attorney as a luxury they can’t afford. However, many entrepreneurs fail to understand that working with an attorney early on can help your company grow faster and stronger and save you time and money in the long run. Read the following eight reasons why you should invest in a business attorney.
1. It Helps You Avoid Legal Mistakes
Legal mistakes that can derail your business can be as simple as using the wrong type of business entity or failing to plan how you’ll exit your business properly. Fresh entrepreneurs often don’t have the experience to know what legal structures are best for their business or the complexities of how each type of entity operates.
If you’re operating as a sole proprietor without any protection, you could be held personally liable if your business is ever sued. There is also the tax burden of being a sole proprietor.
Business attorneys can help you avoid these missteps. They’ll also guide you toward the best business entity to help you achieve your goals while protecting your assets. They can also advise you on how to exit your business at the end of its run.
2. Helps With Business Growth
Legal mistakes could not only make your business go downhill but can also slow down your growth. A business lawyer can and will avoid these mistakes. They can also help you navigate complex areas of the law that affect your business, such as tax law and intellectual property protection.
For example, if you’re not careful with how you operate your company, you could violate your customers’ privacy, which could put you out of business. When you’re running your business correctly and following the state regulations, you’ll be able to grow your business faster by providing better customer service, having a competitive advantage, and attracting more customers.
3. Protects Your Personal Assets
Entrepreneurs generally have personal assets, like savings and retirement funds, to fund their business ventures. However, if you’re a sole proprietor, your personal assets can be on the line if your business is sued.
Once your business is big enough to be sued, it’s often too late to protect your personal assets. Working with a small business lawyer can help you navigate the different forms of business entities that can protect your assets, like limited liability corporations (LLCs).
4. Implements Operational Procedures
Legal matters are often associated with bad news, and operational issues usually cause them. If something goes wrong with your customers’ experience, you may be liable to compensate them.
You can avoid many of these legal issues by implementing operational procedures from the beginning. A business lawyer will help you enforce operational procedures that are legally compliant and protect your customers from potential mishaps.
5. Manages Risk and Saves Time
You may be at risk for certain types of liability, depending on the type of business you own. For example, if you have a retail store, you may risk slip and fall claims or liability for shoplifters stealing merchandise. A business attorney will help you identify and mitigate these types of risks.
You want to avoid legal issues at all costs, especially when trying to get your business off the ground. However, you can’t just ignore your business’s legal matters because they will catch up with you eventually.
Working with a business attorney can help you navigate these issues, so they don’t tear your business down. It’ll help you save time by avoiding the mistakes that can jeopardize your business.
6. Helps Incorporate Your Business
Company incorporation is the process of developing a legal entity that operates under its own name and has its own set of business rules. This allows you to protect your assets, organize your finances, and run your business more efficiently. It also creates an official record of your company’s organizational structure.
Company incorporation involves more than signing a check. The process requires having someone on your side who is familiar with the procedure and can help you avoid legal problems. Whether you’re unfamiliar with the legalities involved in establishing a company or not, a great business lawyer will know what to do.
7. They Can Help With Employee-Related Problems
Employee-related problems can occur in any business. From contract disputes to wrongful termination, there are several ways a business attorney can intervene and come to the rescue.
First, they can act as a liaison between the business and various employees, allowing them to resolve any issues that can arise before they become too serious. Second, they can act as an advocate for the company. This means that they can argue on its behalf if necessary.
Finally, they can negotiate on behalf of the business, meaning they can come up with a solution that works for both sides. As you can see, it’s best to have a business attorney by your side in case you face any similar issues.
8. They Can Help With Environmental Factors That Impact Your Business
Environmental issues are a growing concern for both business owners and local governments. From global warming to water pollution, there are many ways that a business can be affected by the environment.
A business attorney will help you understand your obligations under the law so that you know what you should do to protect your business from liability. They can also advise you on how to minimize your risk of exposure to harm, such as by taking preventive measures like taking precautions against water contamination.
What to Look For in a Business Attorney
When looking for a business attorney, you want to make sure you choose one who specializes in what you need. Working with an attorney with experience in helping entrepreneurs like you will help you get the results you need faster.
The first step in choosing a suitable business attorney is to ask yourself: Is this attorney someone I can trust? The relationship you have with your attorney as a client should be built on trust, and if you and your attorney can’t trust each other, it will be tough, not to say impossible, to work together.
Next, you want an attorney who understands your business. For example, a lawyer specializing in the financial services industry will not know the ins and outs of the retail sector. Let’s have a look at the other essential qualities to look for in a business attorney.
Good Communication Skills
Communication can either strengthen or break a business relationship. If you cannot communicate your needs to your attorney, you’ll end up frustrated and disappointed.
And, if your business attorney doesn’t know what you need or want, your business problems will only worsen. So, finding an attorney who has good communication skills and can understand your needs is key to a successful business relationship.
None of the facts and figures will matter if the attorney you hire has a poor reputation in the industry. If you are working with a general business attorney, they will likely have a reputation that spreads across a wide range of industries.
In that case, ensure that they have a good reputation within your industry. Check out their reputation by reading online reviews and their business history.
Word of mouth is a great way of checking an attorney’s reputation. Pick up the phone and call other business owners in your industry who have worked with that attorney.
Entrepreneurs often have a unique set of challenges when protecting their business. Working with an attorney who has problem-solving skills can really come in handy. They’ll be able to quickly assess issues your business may be facing and find legal solutions to help you overcome any obstacles.
Hire a Business Attorney Today!
Having a business isn’t easy. From competing against larger companies and navigating the legal system to ensuring a smooth transition from one owner to the next, many things can go wrong. So, to avoid all these possible hiccups, hire a business attorney.
At Smith Barid, our team of professional lawyers dedicates their time and effort to getting to know the clients’ needs and creating a plan tailored specially for you and your case. Contact us today for more information, or check out our business blog for more insightful posts!