For most small businesses, using a lawyer is the same as calling a plumber. They only call when the business is in some kind of trouble. But there is so much you can gain from having a full-time business lawyer, especially with legal matters. Big corporations have lawyers at their disposal at all times, which is partly why they are successful. Entrepreneurs are often surprised to learn how helpful these lawyers can be when taking a business to the next level. These tips will help you build a collaborative and productive relationship with your business lawyer.
1. Find The Right Lawyer
First things first, you have to find a lawyer willing to learn about your niche or market. If your lawyer doesn’t know about your industry, there will be communication issues. They should understand what your business needs first before strategizing on how to make it grow. However, if they don’t understand your market, they should have a willingness to learn. There are different types of business attorneys. If you want long-term in-house legal counsel, find an attorney that can put you in touch with other specialists from time to time.
That is why most people prefer working with a law firm. They have a team of lawyers who have specialized in different fields. yourlawyer.com will handle business formation needs, among other things. Legal advice isn’t cheap, so it’s only fair that you find a lawyer who brings other resources to the table. One thing you may benefit from working with a firm rather than an individual lawyer is networking. There are law firms that organize events where business clients can meet and network. Don’t be afraid to ask questions during your first interview.
2. Establish Clear Billing And Fee Expectations
Most complaints about working with an outside counsel are always about cost. If you want a frustration-free relationship that will benefit your business, agree on the fees and billing from the start. When everything is clear, you can focus on more critical business matters. If possible, have a written fee arrangement with clear fee arrangements and billing protocols. Another approach is setting all the milestone projects for your business and estimating costs for every milestone. That way, you will know how much to pay the business lawyer after project completion.
You will have visibility into the different projects you want your business to accomplish. The lawyer might even help set realistic expectations. Lawyers will represent you the best when there is efficient communication between you. Be sure to communicate when you are having financial troubles and establish a payment plan. When the money issues are out of the way, the business will flourish. That is because everyone will be pulling their weight, and the business operations will run smoothly. But if the lawyer always deviates from expectations, you can renegotiate the fees. You must ensure you are getting your money’s worth every time.
3. Exit Strategies
Entrepreneurs are more focused on starting and growing a business that they forget about what can happen if one principal leaves the business. Most people require help when they are venturing into the business world. The first solution is finding reliable partners. But partners can be tricky because they potentially threaten you’re your business. If you have major shareholders, you need a business lawyer. You should have a buy-back or buy-sell agreement when you start the partnership. Exit strategies can severely hurt the business. Yourlwyer.com will ensure that major shareholders or partners can sell their shares without a financial burden on the company.
A brief consultation with a good lawyer can tell you your business legal issues before you even get started. Investing in a lawyer’s time is similar to a medical checkup; it will help you avoid major problems that can cripple a business. When you know the worst-case scenario, you will do everything to avoid it. You will have an understanding with your partners on exit strategies that don’t affect operations. Everything else will be focused on taking the business forward.
4. Protecting Intellectual Property
If you have great product and services ideas, people will want to steal and pass them as their own. When you are on your way to becoming the next Amazon, Facebook, or Tesla, you will need a lawyer to safeguard your intellectual property. The lawyer will help you register patents, trademarks, copyrights. They ensure all the things that give you a competitive edge are protected. It also secures your business growth because the unique services and ideas might be the things that put you on the map. If competitors use your success to take away the market from you, your growth will be slow. Don’t wait until it’s too late before you start looking for a lawyer. Protect your intellectual property from the get-go.
5. Preventative Law
The desire to keep expenses down should not keep you from seeking legal advice. Preventative law is fundamental; it helps you anticipate and prevent legal issues. Many legal issues come from the employees. An employment agreement is one sector that business lawyers can help you with. Lots of companies rely on the knowledge of their employees to succeed. Without cooperative employees, your company will not grow.
Lawyers will help you draft non-compete agreements and non-disclosures to ensure your assets are protected at all times. The lawyers will also evaluate legal implications that may arise from business contracts. They can attend meetings with government officials, business representatives, and private individuals as mediators or advocates. It will be tough to get in trouble with the law when lawyers always oversee business operations.
These five key aspects will help utilize your business lawyer to the maximum. Success will be unstoppable when you and the legal counsel are working together. Business ventures have plenty of legal know-how and maneuvers. Entrepreneurs wear a lot of hats, but if you don’t understand legal processes, there is no way you will help your business in a legal capacity. Use yourlawyer.com to push the business to the next step.