Many entrepreneurs and small business owners will spend hours scouring the Internet searching for answers to the litany of legal questions that arise on a weekly—if not daily—basis in the course of running a business. The desire to avoid legal fees is understandable. Sometimes legal issues are in fact relatively straightforward and can be answered with a quick Google search. For many issues, however, one can quickly get overwhelmed online with conflicting articles, blogs and statutes that are difficult to understand and forms that contain a lot of legal boilerplate that they do not fully understand and largely do not apply to their situation or in their jurisdiction. At that point, a smart business owner will decide to contact a business attorney to handle the legal issues so that he or she can get back to running the business.
An especially important time to work with a business attorney is when an owner is contemplating one of the following business transactions or relationships:
– Buying or selling a business
– Drafting an LLC Operating Agreement
– Reviewing or Negotiating a Franchise Agreement
– Buy/Sell Agreement between Business Partners
– Entering into a Commercial Lease
– Adding a Member, Partner or an Investor to Your Company
– Hiring an Independent Contractor
– Drafting or Reviewing a Non-Compete or Non Disclosure Agreement
– Creating form contracts to be used on a regular basis with customers or vendors
– Dissolving a business
Want to save some time and money when working with a lawyer? One important cost-saving strategy is to do as much homework up front as possible in terms of developing a term sheet describing the important aspects of the transaction (e.g., key objectives, deal points already negotiated between the parties).
Timing is important. It is best to seek the guidance of an attorney BEFORE signing a contract or giving up anything of value. Courts tend to hold people to the terms of the agreements they sign, so business owners are much better off working with legal counsel up front as part of the deal structuring and document drafting process.
Contact Perkins Law for a free consultation about your small business formation, transaction and compliance needs. Both hourly and flat fee packages are available.