The primary objective of someone operating a small business is often to keep costs as low as possible until the company starts generating a predictable amount of revenue. That may mean forgoing professional support which would be ideal but doesn’t seem strictly necessary.
There are certain jobs that you can take on with little risk, provided you have the right support. You can do your own bookkeeping and social media management at first with the right tools and education, for example. Many entrepreneurs and small business executives try to run their businesses without legal representation.
However, the average small business would absolutely benefit from the guidance and support of an attorney. What kind of practical help does a lawyer offer a small business?
They help start things out right
If you make mistakes during the business formation process, you might have personal liability if your business fails or faces challenges. You could struggle to cover costs if you face penalties because you don’t have appropriate licensing and insurance.
A lawyer can help you with everything from securing the licenses and coverage you need to operate your business to the process of selecting the right business form based on the functions your company will perform.
They help you draft strong contracts
From your employment contracts that protect you from unfair competition to your agreements with clients and vendors, the documents that you draft play a major role in how predictable and secure your company’s operations actually are.
An attorney can help you create contracts and other documents, like business plans and employee handbooks, that help you properly protect and operate your business.
They help resolve contract disputes
Issues will inevitably arise, whether a vendor fails to deliver goods on time or a former employee starts a competing business. It can be very stressful for an executive to try to settle a contract dispute while simultaneously managing daily operations at the company.
A lawyer who has helped draft and execute your company contracts will be in the optimal position to help you enforce those contracts later or negotiate disputes as they occur. Lawyers can also help during complex business transactions, such as preparing to sell your company to another business or looking into ways to protect your intellectual property.
Having the right support for your new business will reduce the risk of legal and financial consequences caused by your entrepreneurial efforts.