Why Business Lawyers Are Crucial
By: Rachel Raupp
A common misconception is that small businesses do not need a business lawyer. Nothing could be further from the truth. Regardless the size of a business, it’s always a good idea to have an attorney. It may be crucial to the success of your business. If the time ever comes that an unfortunate event arises and your company is in trouble, it could be too late to hire a lawyer.
When hiring a lawyer, make sure they are familiar with your industry and its legal environment. You should also be cautious of hiring an attorney that represents your competitors. As always, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Businesses can buy and sell property, sue and be sued, create or enter contracts, hire and dismiss employees, and possibly even commit illegal acts. A business lawyer focuses on all of these issues, as well as more, like taxation and business transactions.
When you decide how to structure your business, you should consult a lawyer. They can guide you to make the best and right decision for your company, as well as help you learn what the effect of choosing the structure of your business will be, such as your tax obligations, set-up fees, personal liabilities, and ongoing expenses. Without a lawyer, you may not have the correct information and/or you may make the wrong decision for your business simply because of lack of facts and guidance.
Every time you hire or dismiss an employee, it’s best to involve your attorney in case any issues arise. When hiring someone, they can either be an employee or an independent contractor, both of which have different but specific stipulations according to the law that you must follow or you could potentially get in trouble with the IRS. When hiring an independent contractor, you must create an agreement that outlines your relationship - having an attorney to review the agreement before passing it on would be a beneficial idea.
Whenever your business drafts, negotiates, or enters into a contract, having an attorney present to review the contract would be best so you know that you aren’t putting your business in jeopardy. A business lawyer can play an important part in the negotiations of selling your business or purchasing another. Not only will they review the contract but they will tell you what’s missing from it , what it needs to say that it doesn’t already.