We can assist you in the following areas (and more):
Being successful in business today requires navigating an increasingly complex business world. It’s not enough to merely run a business; you must also deal with governmental regulations, family dynamics, employment regulations, immigration and labor issues, changing tax structures, intellectual property challenges and environmental issues.
Our main goal is to establish a working relationship with our clients and to counsel our clients whenever they need us. We emphasize preventative planning, but we have the litigation expertise to protect or advance our clients’ interests if a lawsuit is filed.
Below are three common areas of unnecessary risk that we see. With the practice of preventative planning, these risks can be substantially lessened or even eliminated.
1. Leaving real property, bank accounts, house and other personal assets open to business lawsuits.
In our society, business owners can separate their personal assets from their business assets, thereby reducing or eliminating the exposure of those personal assets to business risks. There are also tax advantages that can be available through that approach. Overall, the separation of business and personal assets can be the best insurance that you can have; unfortunately many business owners fail to take advantage of this easy and relatively low-cost approach. The main tools used to separate business from personal assets is to form either a corporation or a limited liability company and then, perhaps most importantly, adequate follow-through in transferring title to assets and properly documenting your business actions.
2. Failing to have effective written contracts.
When you have more at stake than you can afford to lose, it is time to get it down in writing. Written contracts can ensure that your business is paid, that you have an agreed-to approach regarding how to deal with problems when they arise, and that your business is confidential. With a written contract, risks from expensive and protracted litigation are lessened and the terms of the transaction are less likely to be disputed. Also, many contracts must be in writing or else they may be unenforceable. Very often, when an agreement is oral, the parties remember different terms of the “agreement”. Our firm will draft and implement effective written contracts that meet your specific needs and goals.
3. Waiting until a lawsuit is filed to consult with a business lawyer.
Some business owners initially decide that it’s too expensive to hire a lawyer or a CPA. What those business owners do not realize is that the costs of prevention are minimal when compared to the very substantial costs of litigation, not to mention the emotional trauma that goes along with it. An ounce of prevention is, truly, worth a pound of cure.