When most people open a business, dealing with legal matters is the last thing they have on their mind. If you’re not adequately prepared, legal issues can catch you off guard and severely cripple your business. Taking a few preventative steps ahead of time will help you survive the legal risks of operating a business. Check out these five things you can do to help legally protect your business.
1. If You Rely On Freelancers, Start Using NDAs
Working with freelancers makes things incredibly convenient for your company. Freelancers allow you to get quality work without the commitment of a full-time employee. It’s essential to protect sensitive information about your company from your freelancers, especially if you’re always testing out new contractors. NDAs are an excellent way to protect your company without interrupting your freelancing process.
Your NDA needs to explicitly state which information about your company needs to stay private. The NDA should state this in a way where no misunderstandings can be made. It’s also important to let your former freelancers know what they are and aren’t allowed to do with information from your company. The final part of your NDA needs to clearly state the steps your company will take if a breach of contract occurs.
2. Protect Your Intellectual Property Ahead Of Time
Copyrights, trademarks, and patents are often worth thousands and thousands of dollars. If your company depends on intellectual property to earn money, you need a commercial litigation lawyer to help you protect your lifeblood. Your lawyer can help you fight accusations from your competitors and guide you through the process of establishing legal protection. Taking these steps ahead of time saves you headaches in the future.
3. Make Sure Your Business Is Structured Appropriately
One of the most significant benefits of structuring your business correctly is the ability to limit your exposure to liability. As a sole proprietor or general partnership, liability can fall entirely on your shoulders. Structuring your business as an LLC or a corporation gives you the necessary protection your company needs.
Structuring your company the right way establishes you as a separate entity from your business. In the event a commercial litigation lawyer is required, you can take comfort in knowing your personal assets aren’t at risk. Proper business structure gives you protection in the event something happens to your business.
4. Consult A Commercial Litigation Lawyer When Making Significant Changes To Your Company
Commercial litigation lawyers can help guide you through making substantial changes in your company. Without the help of the lawyer, you often put yourself at risk of taking unnecessary steps or paying unnecessary fees. Commercial litigation lawyers can help you with establishing intellectual property, structuring your business and dealing with franchise issues.
Commercial litigation lawyers deal with a wide array of legal issues. Their varied experience makes them excellent consultants for when you’re trying to expand your business.
5. Make Sure Your Personal And Property Insurance Are Adequate
Operating when underinsured is a risk far too many business owners take. Simply getting the right insurance helps you protect assets held by your company. Insurance helps protect your company in situations where someone is injured, or property is damaged. Without insurance, your business and personal assets are at risk.
Having the proper insurance is especially necessary if you run a business with a physical location. Any damage to your building, parking lot, company vehicles or any other physical property immediately becomes your responsibility. Even if a driver from another company causes an accident, you’re still responsible for covering the damages. Unless you have insurance, the costs can have devastating effects on your business.