Running a business is no small feat. It takes a lot of time, effort, and dedication. It also takes a lot of know-how. However, we’re not just referring to experience and knowledge in your particular field. We’re also talking about the legalities involved with owning and operating a business. Most business owners assume they won’t need a business attorney unless they’re getting sued. However, business attorneys do much more for a business than defending them against lawsuits. They can prevent lawsuits or legal trouble and also save you a ton of money in the long run. Keep reading for an in-depth look at why every business should have a business attorney.
Do You Need a Business Attorney
As we suggested above, if you’re hiring a business attorney because you’re already facing legal problems, you have made a critical error. It’s not the end of the world, but you’re much better off hiring one as soon as you start operations. Here’s why.
As a business owner, you’re going to be writing, signing, and co-signing several legal contracts. This includes trade agreements with other companies, agreements with independent contractors, hiring on employees, etc. However, legal contracts are binding and you should make sure you completely understand what the contracts are stating and what legal ramifications exist if you are in breach of contract. A business attorney can help walk you through contracts you are about to sign, help you write them, etc.
2. Employee Standards and Policies
Next, if you are a business who employs a staff of any size, you need to make sure you’re operating within the confines of the law. You need to know all of the standards by which employees are to be treated, compensated, and protected. If you have a lawsuit on your hands because you were breaking the law as an employer (even if you didn’t know you were), there’s not much that can be done in your defense. Having a business attorney to help you set up your employee policies and walk you through the standards is a good idea.
As a business owner, your taxes are going to be much more complicated than when you were filing as someone else’s employee. In the past, your employer covered part of your taxes and the rest were taken out of your paycheck automatically. Now, however, it’s on you to ensure all of that is being taken care of. Do you know how to file a tax extension? Do you know how much to pay in quarterly taxes?
4. Physical Property Ownership and Protection
Owning property as a business owner also comes with extra legalities. There are a lot of codes and standards you have to adhere to as a commercial property owner. Public safety is key, and if someone is injured on your property due to an oversight on your behalf, you could be held legally and financially responsible. Unfortunately, lawsuits like these are carried out even when the business owner isn’t necessarily at fault. It’s best to have a business attorney to protect you and your company.
5. Intellectual Property Protection
One aspect often overlooked by business owners is their intellectual property. This includes things like website designs, logos, and other creative properties. A business attorney can help protect your intellectual property in the event that someone tries to steal or take credit for your work. Alternatively, they can protect you if you’re being accused of stealing someone else’s intellectual property.
Why Take the Risk?
As a small business owner, why take the risk of not being covered on the legal front? Why leave you and your company vulnerable to lawsuits or legal ramifications? Hiring a business attorney doesn’t mean keeping one on staff full time, it just means having one to look over certain aspects of your business. We highly recommend taking advantage of the services they provide. For more helpful business information and advice, take a look at the rest of our articles or check out some of our services.