Starting a New Business: How a Lawyer Can Help
Starting a new business is an incredibly exciting process. In my personal experience it is also usually accompanied by a to-do list that is eight miles long. Legal services can get lost in that list, but there are many areas where working with a lawyer from the very beginning of your business can benefit you in both the short term and long term and (equally important) it doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg.
1. What kind of entity is the best fit? A lawyer can help you navigate the vast array of entity choices for your business, and provide information specific to your business to help you determine whether a Corporation, LLC, Partnership, etc. is right for you. A lawyer also ensures that the terms of formation are specific to your business to provide more protection than a form agreement downloaded from the Internet.
2. Do you have a Partner? A lawyer will know the questions to ask to help avoid problems later on. Making sure you and your partner(s) are on the same page from the very beginning will help protect you all from the dreaded “business divorce” and provide a road-map for unforeseen changes as well as planned opportunities.
3. Contracts? Are you planning to lease space? Establishing terms with vendors? Hiring employees? An attorney can draft and review these and any other contracts to protect your interests, explain the language in an agreement, and help negotiate the best terms for your business.
An attorney may be helpful in other areas as well, including: hiring and compensating employees, making introductions to other professionals (insurance agents, accountants, bankers, etc.) and discussing the legal implications of your strategy and business plans. If you want to discuss the particulars of your business, you can contact me at Lauren@SchoenbaumFirm.com.