What Is a Business Attorney?
Business attorneys are primarily responsible for providing legal advice and other services, including corporate formation and drafting of agreements, related to the needs of a specific business. A business attorney reviews and/or establishes the operations within a particular company to make sure that the company is in legal compliance with various business regulations. For example, a business attorney often will advise on whether a corporation or a LLC is a better choice for your company.
Typically, business attorneys assist business clients with matters that include conflict resolution, corporate law issues, business formation, contract review and formation, policies and procedures, purchases and sales, and other legal documents.
Perhaps most importantly, business attorneys are able to assist in proactively guiding a company in order to avoid potential disputes. For example, a business attorney may prepare a contract that has specific provisions to which all parties agree rather than having issues which may result in costly business litigation. Contract negotiation, drafting, and review are key to keep a business running smoothly in order to protect the business.
Business attorneys also provide strategic guidance as to expansion, financing, growth opportunities, managing debt and collections.
What Types of Matters do Business Attorneys Handle?
There are many types of business-related legal issues that business attorneys encounter on a daily basis. Some examples include:
- Business disputes and contract disputes;
- Helping with selecting the proper business entity and business formation;
- Issues related to real estate or business property;
- Identifying intellectual property issues concerning copyrights and/or trademarks;
- Non-compete Agreements;
- Independent Contractor Agreements;
- Purchase/Sale Agreements;
- Partnership and Shareholder Agreements;
- Conflicts relating to the sale or purchase of a company; and,
- Compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
A business attorney provides a wide range of legal services therefore, as the attorney guides the business from inception. Such services entail performing tasks that are transactional, such as drafting contracts and preparing business tax filings, or those that involve potential litigation , such as representing a client in court or negotiating terms for a settlement agreement as well as providing strategic advice.
What Other Types of Issues Do Business Attorneys Handle?
A business attorney may also handle the following issues that are less common:
- Shares or ownership of a company are transferred
- Help with purchasing and selling a business
- Overseeing the “wind-up” process (i.e., the procedures required to dissolve a company);
- Helping a company to adjust to certain changes in the law or new ownership;
- Assisting in changing the structure of a company, if possible, (e.g., going from an LLC to filing as a C corporation); and/or
- Reviewing, drafting, and negotiating miscellaneous business contracts.
Businesses owners generally provide issues and/or tasks that business attorneys are responsible for on a daily basis. Such business work ranges from contract negotiation, review, and drafting on a daily basis to hiring a business attorney to handle the formation and structure of a new business.
Whether you have a new business or have had your business for a while, our business attorneys offer concierge legal services for a flat price each month. Our firm acts as corporate counsel to start-ups and small to medium sized business , assisting with the overall operations of the company, and on call should and when a legal issue rises.
Qualified Business Attorneys
Aside from the regular duties that a business attorney performs, , business attorneys may be generally qualified to provide information concerning legal issues that affect businesses as an expert witness. Specifically, an experienced business attorney may act as a consultant or expert witness if the court or a party to a lawsuit or arbitration requires more information on a particular type of business practice.
Hiring a Business Attorney: What to Consider?
When hiring a business lawyer, you may follow the following guidelines. These guidelines may prove helpful when searching for the right business attorney:
- Credentials and specializations: You may check an attorney’s level of experience and background before hiring a business attorney. You may also do so by reviewing Martindale and Avvo ratings.
- Attorney Fees: Ask the attorney how much their fees are and how they are structured before hiring . At Oppenheim Law, we also offer business concierge services which is a flat fee per month depending upon your legal needs. When conducting the search, it may also be helpful to have a budget in mind.
- Conduct Your Own Research: Read the firm biography, look for reviews from other clients, speak with other attorneys, ask for recommendations from family and friends, and check out attorney rating websites Many times, people find a business lawyer through “word of mouth” recommendations.
- Location: Although not every legal matter requires the hiring of a lawyer who practices in the same state, a person should search for a lawyer who practices as close to their residence or legal issue as possible for jurisdictional and venue purposes. Location is important as you need to have a business attorney who is familiar with local and state laws in the state you are operating , creating a business, or where you are moving your business.
- The Firm Can Handle Cases with History: Additionally, clients should research the firm and other resources the firm has to offer, along with the lawyer. Find out whether the firm regularly deals with the issue at hand.
- Hire The Right Business Attorney: Knowing the needs of your business or having pressing legal issues are both reasons why a business attorney is required. The right business attorney can guide you from the outset of your business and assist with your business growth, making sure that you and your business are legally protected every step of the way.
- A small business owner may think that a business lawyer is only needed for a short period of time; however, there are so many daily legal issues that arise and with changes within your company, you may require quick legal advice daily.
What Are the Benefits of Hiring A Business Lawyer?
The assistance of a business lawyer may not necessarily be required in every situation; however, not only having a business lawyer provide you with guidance regarding the structure and formation of your company but also protect you from legal pitfalls At times when litigation occurs, a business lawyer is necessary to act as a consultant or expert and also to help guide you.
When starting or selling a business, a business lawyer is generally required. When purchasing a business, a business lawyer must review not only the purchase and sale agreement but also the due diligence in purchasing the business. Even though the process of establishing a company may seem straightforward and uncomplicated at first, you may wish to have peace of mind consulting with a business lawyer in order to navigate which business structure to choose.