Top 8 Things You Need a Lawyer for as a New Business Owner
Posted Tuesday, July 18, 2023 by Kim Sandher
Starting a new business is exciting, but it comes with legal considerations that can be overwhelming for new entrepreneurs. From entity formation to contracts and compliance, seeking guidance of an experienced lawyer is essential to ensure your business' success and to protect your interests.
Here are the top 8 things new business owners typically need help with from a lawyer from my personal experience:
1. Business Entity Formation:
Choosing the right business structure is crucial, as it impacts taxes, liability, and management responsibilities. New business owners often need legal assistance in understanding the different options available to them, such as sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), and corporations. A business lawyer can help evaluate your specific needs and goals to recommend the most suitable entity type for your venture.
2. Contracts and Agreements:
Contracts play a vital role in protecting your business interests and ensuring clear expectations between parties. Whether it's drafting client agreements, vendor contracts, lease agreements, or partnership contracts, a business lawyer can ensure that your contracts are legally sound, enforceable, and tailored to your business's unique requirements.
3. Intellectual Property Protection:
Safeguarding intellectual property (IP) assets, such as trademarks, copyrights, and patents, is critical for any business. A lawyer with expertise in intellectual property law can help you register trademarks, file copyright applications, and provide guidance on protecting your innovative ideas from infringement.
4. Regulatory Compliance:
Navigating the complex web of regulations and compliance requirements can be challenging for new business owners. Depending on the industry, your business may be subject to specific licensing, zoning, health, and safety regulations. A knowledgeable business lawyer can guide you through the compliance process, ensuring that your business operates legally and avoids potential penalties.
5. Employment Law:
As your business grows, you may need to hire employees or engage independent contractors. Understanding employment laws, such as wage and hour regulations, anti-discrimination laws, and workplace safety requirements, is essential to avoid costly legal disputes. An employment lawyer can assist with drafting employment contracts, developing workplace policies, and addressing employment-related issues.
6. Tax Planning and Reporting:
Tax planning is a critical aspect of running a successful business. A tax attorney, business lawyer with tax expertise, or a CPA can help you understand your tax obligations, identify potential deductions, and ensure proper tax reporting compliance.
7. Dispute Resolution:
Despite your best efforts, business disputes may arise with customers, partners, suppliers, or even employees. A business owner needs to be prepared to handle such situations efficiently. An experienced litigator can help resolve disputes and protect your business's reputation.
8. Business Succession and Exit Planning:
While it may seem early to think about exiting your business, having a clear plan in place is vital for future success. A business lawyer can assist with developing an exit strategy by drafting the necessary documents, whether it involves selling the business, passing it onto family members, or closing down operations.
As a new business owner, seeking legal assistance is vital to ensure your business operates smoothly and within the bounds of the law. A knowledgeable lawyer can provide valuable guidance in matters related to entity formation, contracts, intellectual property, regulatory compliance, employment, taxes, dispute resolution, and business succession planning, or get you in touch with the right people to guide you through the process. Choosing the right type of lawyer with the relevant expertise will empower you to make informed decisions and protect your business's interests in the long run.
This blog provides general information and is not a substitute for seeking personalized legal advice from a licensed attorney. If you have specific questions, please reach out to Kim Sandher at 206-340-2008 to schedule an appointment.