Why You Should Hire a Lawyer for your Small Business

Carol Goldberg |

Most small business owners only hire an attorney experienced in business matters when confronted with a serious legal problem.  However, legal help is a cost of doing business that can save you money and help your business in the long run.  An attorney can help in many business situations, from the incorporation process to drawing up contracts and representing you in litigation. 

Do I need a Lawyer to Draft a Business Contract?

Many business owners wonder about legal contracts and all of the terms they should include.  Whether it’s an operating agreement, a lease, buying products, entering into a service contact or using sub-contactors, there is one question usually asked, “Do I need a Lawyer to draft the contract?”  The answer is usually YES.  You should talk to an attorney as soon as possible.

In any business transaction, the most important thing is the contract.  You need good legal advice for your business contracts when working with a freelancer, maintenance and clean-up services, purchasing or selling products, entering into service contracts, working with a sub-contractor or starting your own small business.  In these cases, a contract is vital to make sure everything works smoothly.  By having a lawyer draft the agreement, they will make sure your interests are protected.  You will avoid loopholes and your business will be protected by the Law.

When you have a business contract reviewed by an attorney, you protect your intellectual property and specify terms clearly so there is no discussion when receiving a product or service.  Having a contract with a clear list of criteria for evaluating the quality of the end product, will make sure you receive exactly what you want out of the transaction.

If the transaction is simple, you might feel you can draft the business contract without the help of a lawyer.  This is where most ‘loophole’ problems occur.  Not using the right terms may give the other side the option not to comply with your requirements and still fulfill their contractual obligations. Working with an attorney will ensure these situations will not occur before even starting the transaction.

There are several areas that an attorney’s expertise will help.  The most important of these is in drafting your business contracts.  He/she will make sure that the contract or written document is up to date with new terms and regulations of the Law.  He/she will know the legislative changes which may have occurred and make sure your own transactions are current.  Being up to date will save both parties from tackling legal problems later on.

What do I do if my Business gets Sued?

There are times when a business faces other issues that are too complex, too time consuming or fraught with liability issues.  The best move is to retain a lawyer.

For example, customers filing complaints, employees suing for discrimination, local, state or government entities filing complaints or investigations into your business for violation of any laws or environmental issues. 

By the time your business is sued, the preventable damage has been done and the only question remaining is how much you’ll be paying in attorney’s fees, court fees and damages.  To prevent unnecessary attorney costs at the inception of your business, as well as tremendous costs after a lawsuit has been filed, you should consider a consultation arrangement with an attorney who can provide legal review and guidance.

When should I hire an Attorney for my Small Business?

An attorney can advise you of the best legal structure for your business.  He/she can review the advantages and disadvantages of registering your business as a corporation, limited liability corporation (LLC) or business partnership.  An attorney can draft contracts.  Legal documents often include many pages of ‘legalese’ that can confuse even the most well-read person.  An attorney can carefully review your documents and make sure there are no surprises before you sign it. An attorney can help when your business is confronted by a lawsuit from a customer, employee, government or environmental entity for violations of the law.

Owning your own small business can be an exciting and intimidating endeavor. The thrill of big risk vs. big rewards attracts many entrepreneurs.  Legal counsel may not be a component of your budding business, but many corporations have started to retain in-house legal counsel.  Established small business owners also need legal counsel. This is not a service you should skimp on.  Costs from litigations or payments for violations/sanctions can close a business down.  Start thinking of retaining an attorney as legal insurance.  The legal fees you will pay now could save you thousands of dollars in future litigation.  Attorneys are a one-stop-shop for creating a stronger organization for your small business. You will feel better knowing that by hiring an attorney, you are taking some of the risk out of having your own small business.  Hiring a Lawyer now can mean avoiding a lawsuit later on. 

Some of the areas that The Quattro Firm’s Attorneys can assist you are:

  • Determining the legal structure of your business
  • Creating an LLC, Corporation or a business partnership
  • Creating Operating Agreements, Contracts and Non Disclosure Agreements
  • Creating Buy-Sell agreements
  • Litigation and Court Proceedings

We can also review any Operating Agreement, Partnership, LLC or Shareholder Agreement under which you are currently using to make sure your business is protected. 

If you are a small business owner or are interested in starting your own small business, call The Quattro Firm at 561-517-8634 to set up an appointment.  We can discuss your business needs and determine the best solution for you.