The prospect of starting your own business is often an exhilarating one. However, it’s extremely important to keep yourself and your business safe from the crippling risks of litigation. Seasoned commercial lawyers can help minimise the risks of lawsuits and liabilities in several important ways. Legal problems and headaches in Australia can severely impact your business and affect the bottom line. While starting or running a business is an extremely rewarding experience, you will feel more confident with an expert lawyer looking out for you. It’s crucial to take proactive steps to prevent the occurrence of legal issues which can sap any business of life, reputation and profit.
Regardless of the size or nature of the business, there are some common legal issues that should be never be neglected. These issues usually occur in relation to:
- The structure of the business: Each type of business structure is managed, handled and taxed differently. The choice of structure involves knowledge of different types of taxation policies etc and it pays to seek expert legal advice because as a new entrepreneur, you don’t wish to inadvertently put your foot on the wrong side of law.
- Contracts and agreements: Lawyers can help prepare and create contracts that you need in order to legalise your professional relationship with employees, contractors etc. Employment contracts should clearly spell out terms and conditions, salary, benefits, termination clauses etc. Experienced lawyers can help create watertight, comprehensive contracts for your business.
Disgruntled employees are often the main source of stress for businesses and it’s extremely important to legalise the terms of employment especially in the event of sudden termination. Similarly, the business can be sued by customers who claim to be unhappy with your products and services. Providing legal disclaimers etc can help prevent legal headaches down the line.
- Protection of your trademark and intellectual property rights (if applicable) is extremely important. There have been hundreds of cases where the ideas of small businesses have been stolen and used by others in the absence of adequate legal protection.
By seeking legal services well in time, you can get a fair idea of all the proper documentation, authorisations and permits that you need to get your business off the ground. Most business entrepreneurs may not be familiar with all the commercial laws and the steps that they need to take in order to be compliant.
Researching all the information on your own can be exhausting and you may feel confused or overwhelmed. If you hire a competent lawyer right at the onset, he or she will already be familiar with your business setup, details and background and will be in a more empowered position to provide effective assistance.