When should you hire a small business attorney?

Living in the digital age means that we have a wealth of information at our fingertips. You can go online to find everything from how to make the perfect roast to how to file your taxes. While consulting the internet can be helpful in many areas, there are those in which you really need to work with a professional.

Most legal matters fall into the latter category. Knowing when you should hire a business attorney can save money in the long run by avoiding potentially costly mistakes from occurring and can help avoid lawsuits. When in the process of growing your small business, there are a number of circumstances in which working with an attorney is beneficial.

For example, hiring more employees requires an understanding of employment laws, which not only govern the workplace but also hiring practices. They also require some understanding of laws surrounding paying your employees, such as payroll taxes and withholdings. Violating tax laws is one of the most common reasons that small businesses end up under investigation. Other places that can present hairy legal issues are staffing, include worker’s compensation claims and agreements with independent contractors, among other things.

Don’t wait until it’s too late

Although it is possible to access templates of contracts online, you can easily make errors that lead to costly consequences down the line. A business attorney can help draft and review all of the terms to ensure they are in your best interest. If you do find yourself under investigation, it’s vital to hire a business attorney to represent you and protect the business from harm.

Enlisting the help of an attorney when considering real estate deals, such as leasing, purchasing, or selling property is highly recommended. These transactions generally come with fairly complex contracts, and an attorney can ensure that the terms do not only favor the seller or landlord.

Mergers or acquisitions are also examples of when to hire a business attorney. Purchase agreements, transfer paperwork, license and permits may all be a part of the process. The same is true for filing a patent or articles of incorporation.

Lawsuits are a fact of life and it’s better to be proactive rather than waiting until your business is being sued to find a good business attorney who is familiar with your operation.

How to find the right business attorney

A good way of finding an experienced, knowledgeable attorney is getting referrals from other business owners. Another excellent source for referrals are business consultants, who generally have contacts in the field.

In the same way that an attorney can help you prevent or prepare for legal entanglements, a business consultant can work with you to draft a plan to address bad press or internal upheaval that may go along with a legal issue. Business crisis management planning is a crucial tool that protects your business from unexpected crises that can affect the health of your company.