Legal services are generally considered as very costly by many business owners. As a result, most of them avoid hiring a lawyer unless they are dealing with a very serious legal issue. However, involving an attorney is important in many other stages of your business. Failing to do so will only result in lots of time and money wasted in court fees and summons. Here are some of the occasions when a business should hire a lawyer:
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1. Buying or selling a business
Purchasing or selling a business usually involves a lot of paperwork and negotiations. Therefore, attempting to handle the transaction on your own is likely to result in a disaster. A qualified attorney will help you carry out due diligence, negotiate the terms of the deal. and notify you about potential hidden legal pitfalls. In addition, the lawyer will help you draft any contracts that you may require for the transaction.
2. Filing a patent
Filing a patent is usually a very time-consuming, costly and complicated process. It could take months or even years before you get a patent approval. Hiring an attorney that has specialized in intellectual property law will make the process of filing for a patent more bearable. Such a lawyer will help evaluate your product and let you know whether getting a patent will offer a market advantage. In addition, they will walk with you through the patent process and help you understand your rights at every stage.
3. Forming a corporation
Creating a corporation with a board of directors and shareholders is another process that can be very complex. A corporate attorney will offer assistance with everything that is involved in forming a corporation, including drafting a charter of incorporation and appointing directors. In addition, this attorney will also help you handle the complex tax and legal requirements involved in the process.
4. Special allocations
The services of an attorney are required when business partners opt to make ‘special allocations’ of business profits and losses in their LLC or partnership operating agreement. An experienced tax attorney will ensure that the special allocations are done properly, thus helping avoid disputes where one party feels like they are being discriminated against. In addition, it will help avoid getting into trouble in future with the tax authorities.
This is one of the obvious situations when the services of an attorney are required. Litigation could take different forms including being sued for by a supplier or vendor for violation of a contract or being sued by a former or current client or employee. It could also involve being taken to court by the local authority for breaking a specific law. Whatever the reason might be, it is very important to hire an attorney immediately you are aware of the possibility of litigation. Avoid the temptation of downplaying the situation and assuming that it will just go away.
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The guidelines should give you an idea of when the services of a lawyer would be required. Don’t make the mistake of failing to hire an attorney until it is too late.