If you are in a sticky situation with your business, knowing when exactly to hire a business lawyer can make all the difference. Maybe you know exactly what to do and have a plan of exactly what steps you should take, or you are completely in the dark on how to move forward with working with a business lawyer. Either way, we want to shed light on when to work with a business lawyer in this easy decision guide.
When To Work With A Business Lawyer:
- For Litigation
- When Starting A Business
- For Patents
- When Buying A Business
- When Selling A Business
- When Employees Are Suing Your Business
- For Federal Investigations Of Your Business
- When Environmental Problems Are Associated With Your Business
To start off, what exactly is business law?
Business law, otherwise known as mercantile law or even commercial law, is directly tied to any laws that are involved with a local community and commercial issues. When dealing with business law, there is the regulation of commercial entities via partnership laws and the regulation of commercial transactions through contract laws. The purpose of business law is to ultimately protect and safeguard local businesses and prevent legal disputes.
When Do I Need A Business Lawyer?
An attorney in Oklahoma says that “Hiring a business lawyer is an important decision for you and your business, they can provide the insight that you need when entering into a contract.”
So when would you need to take action and hire one of these types of lawyers? Here is a list of some of the reasons you would need to hire a business lawyer:
- For Litigation
One of the most popular reasons that business owners seek out a business lawyer for is litigation. Because certain lawsuits can have multiple federal or state violations, there are so many ways that a business lawyer can assist you in gaining the upper hand in your case. For any situation, however, you want to make sure that the lawyer has plenty of knowledge and experience in the area that you are dealing with.
- When Starting A Business
If you are in the middle of starting a business or are thinking about starting a business, it’s a really good idea to go ahead and hire a business lawyer who can help you out with startup law in the beginning stages. Knowing what to register your business can be a hassle unless you hire someone who knows how to navigate those waters. Registering as an LLC is easy enough for most people, but hiring a business lawyer will still be a great decision because they will be able to point you in the right direction.
- For Patents
Intellectual property is an area that you definitely want to consult a specialist on. Depending on what kind of business you are running, you might want some patents on some of the products or services that your company provides. Hiring a business lawyer to handle your patents will allow you to lean back as they help you navigate through the process of knowing what and when to patent. This can be a huge stress reliever in starting up a business.
Yes, it’s true. Businesses do in fact need to pay their taxes. There are quite a few things to know about when it comes to employee taxes, deductions, and estimated business taxes, so hiring a professional is almost essential. On top of making sure your business adheres to tax requirements, a lawyer will be able to help you make the necessary legal choices to make your tax burden as little as possible. There are special tax forgiveness options and waivers that are potentially available that depending on where your business resides that your lawyer can help you get that will definitely be worth your while.
- When Selling Or Buying A Business
When you are needing to create sales or lease agreements, it’s a really good time to hire a professional who knows the ins and outs of business law. Whenever you are buying or selling a business, contracts are a big part of the process, and you will also need someone with experience in this area as well. Legal documents usually have areas on them that are very hard to understand for the average person. If you do have a professional assisting you, they will be able to read and navigate the jargon and help you avoid any hidden surprises that could ultimately be bad for your business.
- When Employees Are Suing
If an employee is suing your company, it can sometimes mean bad news. If someone decides to file a lawsuit, all you can really do is hire a lawyer to help defend yourself. If you consult a business lawyer ahead of time, however, it can save you a lot of problems and prevent damage to your company in the long run.
- Federal Investigations
If the federal, local or state government files complaints against your company for violation of any laws, having a business lawyer in your corner is definitely the safest bet for the best outcome. Trying to face the government with no representation will almost certainly end up costing you in the end.
There may be some very difficult challenges with your business that might include bankruptcy. If you are struggling financially in your business, it’s okay to ask for help. Filing for bankruptcy could be the best decision if you are truly struggling.
If you do make the decision to file for bankruptcy, there is a long road ahead. There are quite a few options that you can choose from depending on what the situation is with your business, and one might be better than another option. If you hire a business lawyer, navigating all of these different options becomes a whole lot easier and more clear. Once all of the pieces are in place and you have weighed the pros and cons, a business lawyer is able to help you tie things up by accurately filing everything in order and on time in compliance with all necessary requirements.
- Environmental Problems Associated With Your Business
Another reason you would want to hire a business lawyer would be in the case that an environmental issue comes up and your business is unfortunately involved somehow. Even if you are confident that your business didn’t have anything to do with the environmental issue, you could still be penalized for having any association with it. Because of that, having representation that knows what they’re doing is definitely encouraged in this situation.
When Do I Not Need A Business Lawyer?
Running a business can be very expensive, so we understand that there are some things that you definitely don’t want to pay a lot of money an hour for. Thankfully, there are quite a few things that you can do yourself. Some of those things include:
- Applying for required business permits and licenses
- Filing a made-up name for your business if you will do business with a different name
- Leasing commercial space
- Researching and reserving a trademark or name for your business
- Interviewing and hiring employees
- Completing IRS paperwork
- Reserving a domain name for your website
- Forming your own corporation or LLC
- Applying for an EIN
What Will Working With A Business Lawyer Be Like?
Once you hire a business lawyer, they will most likely want to sit down with you and assess your situation. They will probably ask you about your goals for the business, some questions about yourself, and about the history of your business. When dealing with small businesses, lawyers understand that this is more than just a court case, this is your lively-hood and something that you care deeply about. Business lawyers will usually try their hardest to protect you, and your company from harm.
What Is The Cost Of Hiring A Business Lawyer?
In most cases, a business lawyer will charge you by the hour. Occasionally, the lawyer may be able to give you some help by providing some kind of flat rate so that the pricing stays transparent and clear. Most lawyers rates will change according to the location you are currently living in. It’s a good idea to communicate with your lawyer up front to confirm what exactly the costs will be throughout the process.
Avoiding Legal Problems
There are a whole lot of reasons laid out in the article above that you would want to hire a business lawyer for, but sometimes the best thing you could ever do is spend your time and energy on trying to prevent those problems from happening in the first place. If you are unfortunately in the middle of a lawsuit, the damage has already been done and not much can be done about it.
In order to save the most money possible for your business, it’s a really good idea to do everything you can to brainstorm about how to avoid these issues and create prevention plans to protect you and your company. Be sure and consult your lawyer and pick their brain for guidance, advice and to look over documents/research relevant articles on the matters you are facing.
So as you can see, you might not need a lawyer for every single thing that occurs with your business, but it definitely doesn’t hurt to work preventively to avoid pain in the long run. You may not know that you need this kind of legal help until the moment has come and gone, so be sure and contact your local business lawyer today for more information on how to get started.