Along with legal requirements, there can also be litigations, disputes, etc., that need preparation beforehand in order to avoid serious consequences. A lawyer is the person that can help you with all of these and much more by way of their expertise and knowledge on the subject.
For any situation that might have a legal impact on your business, a lawyer should be consulted immediately.
Situations When Lawyers Can Help
- Deciding on a business structure
- Receiving finance from an external source
- Signing deals, contracts, or leases as well as the negotiations for these
- Developing a hiring process
- Being involved in Merger and Acquisition (M&A)
- Protection of intellectual property
The Need for a Lawyer
The need for a lawyer for your small business arises from the fact that there are hundreds of laws for business that need to be followed and each industry will have its own particular regulations and rules. A small business owner would, of course, be unaware of all the laws. Apart from federal laws, there are laws for your state, city, and county that, at times, can overlap or even contradict each other.
The laws are never constant and are continuously evolving in small and subtle ways that can cause you to suddenly be out of compliance with the law even though your business has not changed! This is done to accommodate changes and new requirements of the ever-changing economy and market environment. Keeping track of all these changes can be a daunting task that business owners cannot handle by themselves.
Not all the laws will be relevant to your business, many laws are antiquated, and some laws are not being enforced though they are still laws. This happens with very old laws that are somehow never rolled back and technically continue to be active.
Important Laws for Small Business
While it is practically impossible to list out all the laws here (which would require volumes of books to accommodate) along with various loopholes that can affect a small business, here is a general list of laws that are required to be followed by a small business.
The actual law applicable to your business will differ according to your geographic location as well as the nature of your business.
Business Formation Laws –
These laws define the steps and measures that you need to take to form and operate a small business. They also vary with the type of business entity like partnership, limited Liability Company (LLC), corporation, etc.
Consumer Protection Laws –
These are various federal and state laws that help ensure that the consumers are protected against fraudulent, misleading, faulty goods and/or fault services, etc. These laws must be adhered to in all your relationships with any present or prospective customer.
Contract Laws –
These laws will act as guidelines for the content of the contracts that you may enter into with your clients or with other businesses.
Hiring and Employment Laws –
These laws are designed to protect the employee’s rights and care should be taken against any violation as a result of any sort of discrimination on the basis of race, religion, skin color, sex, etc. There are also various laws that regulate health and safety and various other benefits that need to be provided to the employees.
Environmental Laws –
If your business is into any kind of manufacturing, then you will have to follow various laws that are designed to protect the environment.
IP (Intellectual Property) Laws –
IP laws are designed to protect the intellectual property of a person or an entity from being misused and at the same can be used for protecting your intellectual property from any sort of abuse as well.
License and Permit Laws –
This pertains to various licenses and permits that your business must have in order to operate.
Zoning Laws –
These are designed to regulate the use of the property that your company may lease or buy, according to the type of business being operated.
With so many laws, regulations, and specific rules that change from state to state, county to county, city to city, and from year to year, it is absolutely essential for your business to have a lawyer. A lawyer will protect your company’s best interests and defend it against the many challenges and difficulties that can arise during the course of simply doing business.