5 Legal Tips
For Small Businesses
As more and more people decide that they would rather be their own boss, or simply decide that they want to own their own business; so too does the small business subset grow. Some small business owners are pursuing their work in their free time, while others go so far as to chasing their dream full time. Regardless of the situation or circumstance you find yourself in it is of the upmost importance to protect yourself from any legal troubles that could materialize. In order to help you as much as possible we have compiled what we consider to be the most helpful legal tips for small businesses.
- Get Legal Advice Early: The most effective way to deal with litigation is to involve the proper lawyer as quick as possible. Involving the proper lawyer can avoid missteps that can either cost you footing in the litigation process or prevent unneeded costs, be sure to contact a proper lawyer in any event you feel it may be nessecary.
- Keep Up to Date Legally: This is extremely important in any type of business whether it be serving food to filing records. If you are not following the legal guidelines for your business type, you can end up doing more harm then good unintentionally.
- Protect Your Intellectual Property: There are few things worse then seeing your hard work cashed in on by someone else. õt only can this be extremely disheartening it can also set you back months if not years. In order to prevent this from ever occuring be sure to protect your intellectual property. You can protect yourxelf by seeking trademark registration, or by ensuring that your employees or visitors to your business sign non disclosure documents, or even non competition agreements.
- Keep Proper Corporate Records: Another way to avoid any legal trouble with your small business is to ensure that you are up to date. Small businesses have become notorious for letting their mandated paperwork fall to the wayside, even though the paperwork is just as important if not more so. Remember failing to keep up with corporate records can result in personal liability and even shut your business down for a period of time.
- List All Responsibilities and Rights: It is paramount that if you are going into business with partners to have listed which individual has what responsibilities and rights. Often times, partners or shareholders fail to sit down and list down their rights and responsibilities. When problem arise, this often result in costly litigation fees which drain parties both financially and mentally. Such problems can be simply avoid by having an agreement which deal with the following issues:
- How much capital must each person contribute?
- What happens if the business needs more capital?
- What happens if one person leaves the business?
- What happens if one person dies?