Whether you’re starting a new company, thinking about entering into an agreement with another business, or are simply curious – knowing when to consult your lawyer is important. While the Internet is full of opinions on this topic (unfortunately, many wrong), here are five hard and fast rules for when you should contact and speak with a business law firm.
1) When Drafting Contracts
The only way to know if you have ‘iron clad’ protection in writing is to speak with an attorney about it. Talk to them if their contract leaves room for interpretation or there’s too much gray area instead of black and white. Don’t be afraid of what they might say. Lawyers want to help entrepreneurs succeed!
2) Before Joining Any Negotiation With Another Party
Never enter into any negotiation without knowing the full extent of what you’re signing up for. This includes fully understanding what the other side is asking for and what they might be willing to give up. Again, talking to a lawyer will help you know where you stand – before sitting at that table.
3) When Forming a New Business
If you’re looking to start a business, there’s a lot of legal paperwork that needs to be filed. This includes Articles of Incorporation, bylaws, and more. A lawyer can help make sure everything is filed correctly and in a way that protects you down the road. Moreover, if you form your company incorrectly, it could lead to future problems or issues. Call an attorney before getting too far into the process! The few minutes or hours that you will spend consulting with a business lawyer will be worth the money in terms of protection and peace of mind.
4) When Intellectual Property is an Issue
Intellectual property (IP) is one of the most important – and often misunderstood – aspects of running a business. From trademarks to copyrights, it’s critical to protect your ideas and creations. A lawyer can help make sure you’re doing everything possible to keep others from stealing your hard work. In addition to this, many attorneys can also help you file trademarks and copyrights for your IP.
5) When in Doubt, Talk to a Lawyer
This should be pretty self-explanatory. If you have any questions or concerns about anything related to your business, talk to a lawyer. They’re there to help and can offer you valuable advice that could save you time, money, and a lot of headaches down the road. Moreover, should you need their services, they know the ins and outs of the business world and can help your company avoid potential legal problems.
While it’s impossible to list every scenario in which you might need to speak with a business law firm, these are five pretty common ones. If you’re ever unsure whether or not you should contact them, don’t hesitate to give them a call! Chances are they’ll be more than happy to chat with you and offer their advice.