Business Law Overview
Business law is a large area of practice that includes several aspects of operating a business. From starting a business and hiring employees to expanding a business or closing the doors, knowing some basics of business law can help business owners along the way. Typically, but not always, corporate attorneys with large law firms represent large or multi-national corporations. Based on scale and size, smaller businesses tend to gravitate toward local business law attorneys. In any event, whether you select a solo attorney or mid-sized law firm law firm, rest assured that a qualified business law attorney is a wise investment.
Opening a Business
Opening a business is a big step. A person can't just rent a building one day and decide to open a business. For most people, securing financing, writing out a business plan, and obtaining necessary permits is necessary. All aspects of opening a business fall under the scope of business law.
When people open a business, they likely have to come up with a name, logo, and slogan. Some of these items might run into copyright or trademark issues if they aren't completely checked out. A business law attorney can help business owners go through all those aspects of opening a business. Additionally, checking patents and vetting out other potential issues with intellectual property can be handled through a business law attorney.
Operating a Business
Dealing with business finances, employees, taxes, Workers' Compensation, and contracts are all parts of operating a business. For business owners, knowing all aspects of every topic can be troublesome. Because all of these fall under the scope of business law, it is possible for business owners to get help with debt collection, wage and hour compliance, business taxes, business liability, and drafting contracts. Some business owners might need to sign leases or employment contracts as part of their business. Understanding how these can affect a business is vital, so having an experienced professional go over them is necessary.
Growing a Business
As businesses grow, the structure of the business might have to change. Choosing a legal structure that is right for the business is a big step. Knowing the difference between a sole proprietorship, a limited liability corporation, a partnership, and a non-profit organization is only the beginning of growing a business. Mergers and acquisitions are also included in the business growth aspect of business law.
Closing a Business
When a business must close its doors, there are legal considerations that business owners must ensure are properly addressed. For example, if the business is closing because of financial issues, the business owner might need to consider Chapter 7 bankruptcy. A business that closes must also tie up loose ends with customers and employees by making sure that customers get items they paid for and employees are paid for time worked.
Business owners probably already know that running a business can be hard work. When a business owner needs help ensuring legal compliance for the business, an experienced business law attorney can help. These experts have the knowledge of the law and the experience necessary to know how certain aspects of the law might affect the business and the business owner.
The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.
Additional Business Law Articles
- Business Law
- How to Name Your Business
- An Overview of the Uniform Commercial Code
- Breach of Fiduciary Duty
- What are Negotiable Instruments?
- How to Avoid Big Mistakes in your New Business
- What Should Be Included in an Employee Handbook?
- Letters of Intent and Term Sheets
- Shareholder Agreements
- An Ounce of Prevention - How Businesses Can Minimize the Threat of Litigation
- Buy Sell Agreements
- What is Your Business Worth?
- How to Deal with Common Disputes of Family Owned Businesses
- Business Slowdowns, Downsizing and Cost Reductions
- Due Diligence in Business Mergers and Acquisitions
- Being Squeezed out of a Family Owned Business?
- How Can a Business Law Attorney Help You Dissolve Your Business?
- The Importance of Business Law Attorneys
- The Sarbanes Oxley Act: Success or Failure?
- Common Small Business Tax Deductions
- The Board of Directors Duties of Care and Loyalty
- Common Contract Terms Explained
- Advertising Your Business on the Internet
- Are There Any Limits on Executive Compensation?
- Employer Identification Numbers
- How to Finance a New Business
- Corporations and the Law
- Business Finance Laws
- Legal steps to starting a business
- What is the Retail Installment Sales Financing Act?
- What is equity financing?
- I want to do business online. Do I need to charge state sales tax?
- What is debt financing?
- Running a Business: Legal FAQ
- What are the advantages of organizing a business as a Sole Proprietorship?
- What are the advantages of a limited liability partnership (LLP)?