The legal system has always been complicated, especially for small businesses. There are several law areas that can apply to small businesses, such as employment law, intellectual property law, tax law, contract law, etc. To stay compliant with these regulations and to have an expert on your side, you need to hire a good business lawyer.
When starting a new business or expanding your current one, you should hire the services of a qualified business attorney. With a dedicated legal team, you can rest assured that your company is protected from potential risks.
What is a Small Business Lawyer?
A small business lawyer is an attorney who specializes in representing small businesses and entrepreneurs. They may represent companies with fewer than 50 employees, sole proprietorships, partnerships, or LLCs.
A small business lawyer is an expert in all matters related to running a business. They have extensive knowledge of all potential legal problems a small business might face.
These experts can help you with all aspects of your business, including contract disputes, incorporation documents, employment agreements, intellectual property issues, mergers and acquisitions, and general corporate matters.
Small business lawyers can also handle cases involving personal injury claims, bankruptcy, and other civil litigation. These attorneys know how to navigate through the court system, and they will make sure that you get what you need to have a thriving business.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Start a Small Business?
The answer to this question depends on many factors. For example:
- How much money do you want to invest into your business?
- What type of business are you planning to start?
- Are you going to work for yourself or employ others?
- Do you plan to incorporate your business?
- Will you need any licenses or permits?
If you answered yes to some of these questions, you should consider hiring a lawyer. Even if you think you don’t need a lawyer, you might not realize all the things you need to take care of before opening your doors. It might be wise to at least have an initial consultation with a lawyer just to hear how they can help your business.
If you plan on growing beyond the initial stages, you might benefit from hiring a lawyer. They can help you draft a business plan, write up a business structure, and advise you on how to grow your business.
What Can a Small Business Lawyer Do?
A small business attorney can provide valuable advice and guidance on everything from setting up your business to managing your finances. They can help you get your business off the ground, but they can also assist you throughout your business’ lifetime.
Here are just a few examples of their services:
- Helping you set up a limited partnership or corporation.
- Drafting articles of incorporation.
- Drafting contracts and partnership agreements.
- Helping you file taxes.
- Advising you about your liability insurance needs.
- Providing legal counsel regarding employee benefits.
- Representing you in business disputes and commercial litigation.
- Handling trademark infringement lawsuits.
- Assisting you in negotiating contracts with suppliers.
- Advising you on how to protect your intellectual property.
- Negotiating licensing deals.
- Helping you manage your business finances.
- Serving as a liaison between you and your accountant.
- Informing you when it comes time to sell your business.
A small business lawyer can help you navigate the legal system to protect your rights and interests. In addition, they will advise you on how to avoid potential pitfalls that could jeopardize your business.
Types of Small Business Lawyers
There are six different types of lawyers who specialize in helping businesses. Working with each one of them is a little bit different. Depending on the kind of legal specialization you need, you may have to hire more than one type of lawyer.
General business lawyer
These attorneys practice across a wide range of law areas. However, they usually focus on advising entrepreneurs and small businesses on various topics such as contract negotiation, tax preparation, and intellectual property protection. In addition, general business lawyers often work closely with accountants and financial advisors.
Hiring a general business lawyer is generally a good start for someone who wants to build a successful business. If you plan on starting a new company, this is probably the best option for you. These lawyers know what it takes to run a business and they understand the ins and outs of meeting regulatory compliance. They can help you plan out your strategy and give you tips on making your business succeed.
Employment and labor lawyer
An employment and labor lawyer focuses primarily on the intricacies of employment and labor laws. These attorneys help both employers and employees understand their rights and responsibilities under state and federal laws. They help resolve disputes over wages, benefits, discrimination, harassment, and wrongful termination. It would be wise to consult an employment and labor lawyer when drawing up employment contracts and non compete agreements to make sure everything is covered.
An M&A lawyer is an attorney who specializes in mergers and acquisitions (M&A). In this context, “merger” refers to two companies combining their assets and operations into a single company, while “acquisition” refers to one company buying another company.
When two businesses are merging, it’s important for each to have legal representation to make sure their rights and interests are being looked after. This is especially true if a large company with in-house counsel or a team of corporate lawyers is merging with a smaller business.
M&A attorneys also handle transactions involving companies outright buying other companies. They can negotiate terms of sale, prepare acquisition documents, and represent buyers and sellers during the business purchase.
A tax lawyer knows what business income and expenses qualify for various deductions and credits. They can help you file income taxes, prepare returns, and represent you during audits. As a result, these lawyers can help you minimize the amount of money you pay in taxes. They also know which forms must be filed at certain times to avoid getting hit with penalties or interest.
Intellectual property lawyer
An intellectual property lawyer protects the value of your ideas by assisting you in registering them as trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets. They can also help you negotiate licenses and other forms of protection for these inventions.
They may be employed by a company that makes products using patented technology or work for a patent or trademark office or government agency.
A contract lawyer is an expert in all things contracts and related practice areas. They perform contract review and draft agreements, such as leases, purchase orders, confidentiality agreements, sale agreements, shareholder agreements, and so on. They can also draft non-compete clauses, which prevent former employees from working at competing firms.
These lawyers may be generalists focusing on business law or specialists focusing on particular contract law areas.
What to Ask Your Small Business Lawyer Before You Hire Them
If you are considering hiring a small business lawyer, here are some questions you should ask:
- How long have you been practicing?
- What types of cases do you typically take on?
- How can you help us grow and develop our business?
- Do you specialize in any area of the law?
- What experience do you have with startups?
- Do you offer a free consultation?
How to Hire a Small Business Lawyer
When looking for a small business lawyer, there are several things you need to consider before making a decision.
- You want to look for a lawyer who has business experience. A small business lawyer will likely have more experience with corporate formation than a personal injury lawyer, but it’s important to remember that most lawyers practice both civil litigation and transactional work. The best way to find out if a lawyer has experience with small business transactions is to ask them directly.
- You should pick a lawyer and law firm whose experience and background align with your company’s objectives. For example, if you’re planning to expand your business, you’ll probably want a lawyer who has experience growing businesses. On the other hand, if you’re thinking about starting a new business, you’ll want a lawyer who has worked on similar projects in the past.
- You want to look at how much experience the lawyer has had with small businesses. In addition to having experience with different types of companies, you want a lawyer who has handled various legal issues related to your industry. This includes contracts, licensing, intellectual property, employee relations, mergers and acquisitions, and bankruptcy.
- You want to consider whether the lawyer offers free initial consultations. Many lawyers charge an hourly rate for their services, but this doesn’t mean that they won’t provide free consultations. Some lawyers offer free initial consultations to get to know their clients better and see what kind of case they would like to pursue. Others don’t want to lose potential business clients. It’s always good to check with your prospective lawyer to make sure that they provide initial consultations.
Small Businesses And Their Legal Needs
Business owners face a wide range of legal needs when launching and running their businesses. These needs include everything from drafting business contracts and dealing with disputes over intellectual property rights to handling employment matters and protecting against fraud. Each aspect of business law requires a unique set of skills and knowledge.
A small business owner may need to hire a lawyer to handle all aspects of their business. However, not every business owner needs a full-time attorney. Instead, some entrepreneurs prefer to use outside counsel as needed. When you choose a lawyer to represent you, you should explain your specific needs to them. This allows the lawyer to determine which areas of law are necessary for your particular situation.
The first step in finding the right lawyer for your small business is to figure out what type of work you need to be done. Next, find a lawyer who specializes in the area of law that you need assistance with to help your business succeed. Finally, talk to several attorneys before making a final decision.
Contact Texas Business Attorneys
At Kelly Legal Group, we understand how difficult it can be to run a small business and navigate complicated corporate law. Our team of business lawyers Austin, TX has been helping entrepreneurs just like you for over a decade. We have helped business owners form their LLCs, draft operating agreements, obtain licenses and permits, resolve business disputes, and much more.
A Texas business attorney from Kelly Legal Group will also provide legal transaction services and business litigation representation. We assist clients with everything from drafting contracts to resolving disputes over intellectual property rights. Our law firm can give advice on the structure of employee benefits programs and other types of employee compensation plans.
We’ve helped many small business owners resolve disputes with landlords, creditors, and former partners. In addition, we offer guidance on how to avoid common pitfalls when starting a new business.
If you’d like to learn more about our small business law services, contact Kelly Legal Group today at (512) 505-0053.