If you are an entrepreneur and running your own business, it is likely that you have a very crucial role to play in your business’s growth and success. You are leading your business as well as playing the role of a salesperson, customer representative manager, developer and project manager. Although you can hire employees or outsource certain roles, you need to maintain a check on all of these positions yourself. Even if you are working as an owner of a very small business, you will never be free from the liability of following the law. Every business that is officially launched has to abide by the law of the registering state irrespective of the size of the business. Even if you have started a small scale business or you are currently establishing your business, you must know how to handle legal issues. It is not necessary for you to hire a lawyer at an initial level, however you must acquire all of the knowledge regarding business laws. Here are five ways which will help you in protecting your small business against any legal fallout.
1. Always Make Agreements in Writing
Trusting your clients and other business stakeholders is very important at the initial level because you are new to the business industry. However, many owners are ditched or manipulated later on, as no contract or written agreement was signed at the initial level. Whenever you start working with another agent, whether they are a service provider, client, business partner or an employee, it is recommended that you sign a written contract that includes all of the terms and conditions clearly. By doing so, you will be able to resolve all upcoming disputes as everything will be mentioned in the contracts.
2. Keep All Paperwork Updated
Once you are done with all of the contracts and paperwork, the next crucial task is to file and assemble your papers carefully. It is essential for a business to have a proper bookkeeping system that updates all of the data whenever any kind of changes are made in the policies. Outdated paper work is of no use for a business as missing data creates confusion. For example, your company has paid taxes and documented all of the tax documents. However, you need to update the previous document and records every time you pay your business taxes. This can be a troublesome and lengthy process so one can even hire an accountant or bookkeeper if they have enough resources.
3. Research and Learn about the Prevailing Laws
You may not be a professional lawyer and therefore, at times, you may make legal mistakes that you are often not aware of. Hiring a permanent lawyer for your small business is not a necessity. However, an entrepreneur can work on enhancing their legal knowledge which pertains to their business industry and business size. There is plenty of information available on multiple legal business websites such as the US small business administration domain.
According to the Small Business Administration website of the United States, we have mentioned a few basic points that every small business owner should know below.
- Registering Intellectual Property, Copyrights, and Trademarks
- Financial laws
- Employment and Labor laws
- Marketing and Advertising laws
4. Register your Intellectual Property
If your business has an online existence or your business type is e-commerce, an intellectual property is very important for you. The reach of online business is far better than a local business and you need to protect all of your business identities such as logos, design, and ideas by registering your intellectual property. There is a very fine line between developing a creative content and plagiarizing the content of another person. Unfortunately, t is likely that, if you have not registered your business trademark and have not reserved copyrights of your business, another individual can copy your content, register it in their business name, and file a case against you.
5. Get Professional Legal Advice
When it comes to setting up legal formalities of your business, there is nothing more important than this. If you are confused about setting up the legal contract for your business and are not aware of the essential terms of conditions for your business, you should enlist the help of a professional lawyer. The lawyer will not only read your business’ situation but they will even protect your business interest while giving you needed legal advice.
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