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6 Things a Lawyer Can Do to Help You Start a Small Business

When you are ready to start a small business, there can be a lot to do, and the choices you make now can impact you and the success of your business in a big way down the line. In this three-part blog series, we will reveal some the specific things that an experienced business attorney can do to help you start a small business and get it running.

If you have any questions regarding getting your business started or are ready for some professional and experienced help, you can turn to experienced Denver Business Lawyer Thomas E. Downey. He has the skills, knowledge and integrity you can rely on to help you position your small business for optimal success in the future.

Here’s How an Attorney Can Help You Start a Small Business

1 – Choosing a legal entity for your business

checklist for starting a business

One of the first and most critical decisions you will make as you start a small business will be to choose a legal business entity. In particular, you will need to decide whether to incorporate or, alternatively, form another type of business entity (like, for instance, a limited liability corporation). While there are various legal requirements for each option, your choice in a business entity can end up impacting:

  • How your business pays taxes
  • Your business versus personal liability
  • The success of your business moving forward.

By working with a lawyer as you start a small business, you can get the legal insight you may need to make the right choice upfront and, in doing so, position your business for success from the start.

2 – Devising Buy-Sell Agreements

Buy-sell agreements (or buy-out agreements) are essentially contracts between co-owners of a business that stipulate specific provisions for how the business will be impacted by certain “triggering events.” In particular, these agreements can specify what happens in the event that a co-owner of the business:

  • Becomes disabled or passes away
  • Goes through a divorce
  • Decides he wants to sell his shares or wants out of the business.

3 – Developing employment contracts

"start a business" post-it

If you will need to hire employees to help you start your small business, then having effective employment contracts in place now is a good move. As you develop employment contracts, just some of the important things you may want to consider include:

  • The manner in which you want to employ people – For instance, do you primarily want full-time employees? Or will you be relying on some part-time employees and contractors? Having different employment contracts for each option can be critical to appropriately setting up these employment relationships.
  • Terms of termination – Just as you want to establish terms for hiring people, you may want to have some terms for letting people go in the event they don’t work out.

There may be various other important provisions to include in your business’ employment contracts, and working with a business formation lawyer can be extremely helpful to including all of the necessary provisions so you are protected as you start a small business.

4 – Filing a Patent

Filing a patent can be a time-consuming, complicated and expensive process that, depending on the nature of the patent, can take months or even years to conclude. So, if patenting an invention or idea is part of your plans for starting your small business, then it’s a smart idea to first consult with an experienced business lawyer who can advise you regarding whether pursing a patent is in your best interests or whether there may be better alternatives, given:

  • The nature of your business
  • The nature of the invention or idea for which you want to obtain a patent
  • How you see your business getting started and growing.

Additional Ways an Attorney Can Help You Start a Small Business

5 – Reviewing third-party contracts

man running down road at start line

Depending on the nature of your business, you may be signing various third-party contracts, such as vendor contracts, equipment lease contracts, distribution contracts, etc. Before you move forward and authorize any third-party contracts, make sure that you have an experienced business attorney review the terms of these agreements to ensure that:

  • These contracts don’t contain unfavorable terms for you.
  • Your business’ interests are fully protected.

6 – Minimizing the possibility of future business disputes

Ultimately, one of the more important reasons to work with a lawyer as you start a small business is to help you put protections in place now so that your business faces minimal liability and/or disputes in the future.

The bottom line is that, if you don’t plan appropriately upfront, your business could end up facing unnecessary costs and challenges; in the worst cases, a lack of appropriate planning could result in businesses never getting off the ground and/or their owners facing personal liability.

So, set yourself and your business up for success by consulting with an experienced lawyer now as you start a small business. An ounce of prevention now can certainly be worth tens pounds of cure later when it comes to the success of your enterprise.

Denver Business Lawyer at Downey & Associates, PC

If you need help starting a small business or dealing with any business-related legal issues, you can count on Denver Business Lawyer Thomas E. Downey. Since 1983, Thomas Downey and the other legal professionals at Downey & Associates, PC, have been providing individuals and businesses in the Denver Metro Area and throughout the U.S. with the highest level of legal service for their legal issues. Our dedication to our clients, coupled with our extensive experience handling complex matters of business law, means that our clients can always trust that we will aggressively protect their rights and help them achieve the best possible outcomes to their sensitive legal matters.

A choice to work with our Denver business attorney can give you confidence that your legal issues will be handled with expert care and attention and that we will always work diligently to help. We have the integrity, experience and resources necessary to ensure that you will receive the highest level of personal service, the highest quality legal services and, ultimately, the best possible resolution to your important legal issues.

Contact Us Today

We encourage you to learn more about your rights and options, as well as our various services, by calling us at (303) 813-1111 or by emailing us using the contact form on this page.

From our law offices in Centennial, we serve clients throughout Colorado and the U.S.

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