If your business starts expanding, then you might want to consider getting a lawyer. Initially this may not seem like a good investment, but if you are servicing a high number of clients, working with a high volume of suppliers or even doing business abroad then a lawyer will be essential to your business in the long run.
A lawyer will be able to provide assistance on a variety of aspects within your business, from trademark and copyright advice to overseas trading and operating laws.
How do I choose the right one for me?
When deciding on which firm to take on, first consider size. Bigger firms will have a higher hourly rate but they do have the advantage of having a large number of staff which means that they’ll have attorneys that specialise in different areas depending on your needs.
Smaller firms or solo practitioners will have a good broad knowledge, but there is a risk that eventually they may have to outsource any specialist work.
Before approaching different firms, try to determine what types of things your lawyer will be required to deal with as this will then allow you and them to establish whether they are a good fit and have the right skills and specialist lawyers to offer you the best service. When meeting them, establish their experience in different areas of law and ask what other clients they have that are in a similar sector to your business. You want an experienced law firm that will be able to keep on top of your industry.
Aside from establishing their level of expertise, it is also worth thinking about how you feel about the people you meet from the firm. Do you like them, and do they seem like they can communicate well? This will give you an initial idea as to whether you will find them easy to work with, which is essential for business owners.
It is also worth discussing price when meeting with different lawyers and firms. It’s best to get the initial discussion about their rates and their billing methods out of the way so that everything is on the table.
Some lawyers charge per the hour, some have a flat fee for certain services or may have the option of a monthly retainer. Work out what billing and payment methods will best suit your business and then compare the different options being offered by different firms and lawyers that you have approached.
Finding a lawyer for your business doesn’t need to be hard, but with so many experienced law firms out there catering for many different industries it is worth selecting your top 5 and really scrutinising them to establish which is the best fit for you.