Have you ever considered hiring a business lawyer?
Busy entrepreneurs often have a ton on their plate, and if you’re a new business owner, you probably feel like your days never end.
This is why having a reliable, experienced support team that includes legal and financial experts is so important to have in place.
It’s not only going to take some strain off your back; it could end up being crucial to the success of your business.
Hiring a Business Lawyer: Where to Start
All businesses need help and should get it well before they launch. But hiring a business lawyer is a good idea at any stage.
Starting your search for a business lawyer these days is as simple as an online search; their website should offer a clear overview of important information, such as background, experience, practice areas, etc.
Ask your local business associations as well as business colleagues, partners, trusted friends, and other associates if they know of any excellent business lawyers or firms.
After you have done a thorough search in your state (or beyond if the location is not essential), you can then start calling around.
You’ll want to pick up the phone or meet in person if you see someone who catches your interest. However, do not underestimate the power of that initial consultation.
Here are some questions to consider as you make those calls or visits.
1. What are your fees and billing practices?
Many new entrepreneurs are naturally worried about one thing all the time: cost.
How much does a business lawyer actually cost?
Well, here’s the thing with costs and fees: they will vary depending on the person, the legal context, and even the practice area.
Sometimes initial consultations will be free, but not always.
But most of the time lawyers will have an hourly fee, so you can start by asking about that. Bear in mind, though, that cost should not be the most significant factor here, for a few reasons:
- There is no way of predicting the long-term benefits (financial and otherwise) that can come from working with a reputable business lawyer;
- A lawyer who charges significantly less than the going rate might be a “red flag;”
- Most of the time legal fees are deductible.
So while it’s normal to worry about how much things are going to cost, remember that there are benefits that will outweigh the costs—including the possibility of them preventing or mitigating a legal mistake that could otherwise damage or shut down the business.
2. What other types of businesses do you normally work with?
A business lawyer is someone that you should consider taking on as a long-term partner.
They will be in charge of highly sensitive information and may even be deeply integrated into many of your business activities.
If you are hiring a business lawyer, be sure to team up with someone who has some expertise in your niche.
You will want to look for a lawyer specializing in a specific field of law pertaining to your business.
For example, digital agencies may want someone well-versed in laws pertaining to internet marketing, a business that plans to incorporate should get someone experienced in that area, and so on.
Most people who practice business law will detail this specialty on their website, and firms with multiple partners/staff will be able to direct you to someone with experience in your area.
3. How experienced are you in business risk management?
Depending on the size, scope, and type of business in question, you will want to consider hiring someone who will always be considering things from a risk management perspective.
There are always risks in business, but even more so when you consider unforeseen global problems like the recent global pandemic.
And if you have stockholders, you need to be on top of markets, some of which are more volatile than others.
But even basic business activities carry some risk, such as:
- The structure you choose as a startup
- Important legal information for starting a business
- Your shareholder agreements
- Permits and licensing
- Due diligence
- Employee relations
For more details on this topic, check out our blog on how a risk management consultant can help you grow your business.
4. Can you give me a few examples of successful cases?
Many business lawyers will be able to play the role of consultant and carry out some crucial tasks.
When hiring a business lawyer, ask about how they tackle day-to-day things like:
- Drafting contracts
- Legal details pertaining to your particular business structure
- Helping with mergers and acquisitions
- Compliance and risk management
- Preventing and resolving conflicts
- Securities law
Part of your research in hiring a business lawyer will be to make sure that they are genuinely experienced and reliable in the suitable areas.
This might even depend on your business approach and style: do you want someone who is a little more laid-back or someone who you know will aggressively fight for you in the case of a serious legal issue?
Don’t be afraid to ask for references or examples of previous cases to get a sense of their approach. But, again, there is no “right” or “wrong” here. It’s just a matter of finding someone you feel will be able to truly protect your business interests.
Hiring a business lawyer in Colorado? Give us a call.
Growing a business is hard, and all business owners should have qualified legal representation on their side.
The right lawyer will work with you from the get-go to ensure you are legally protected and you have the proper foundation to build a thriving business.
Click here to schedule a 30-minute consultation or call 1-855-976-3783 for more information.
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