getting started with your legals

CHAPTER 1

Getting started with your legals.

 

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When you’re starting a new business, getting your legals done can seem like a daunting process. There’s an endless sea of information out there, and everywhere you turn you seem to be told you need different things. You’re often left wondering – what is the point of legal services? What do I actually need? Do I need a lawyer or can I do this myself?

In this introductory chapter, you’ll get a birds-eye view of the various ways that legal services fit into what you do as a business. Our goal here is to help you better understand what lawyers do and the value of getting your legals sorted right from the beginning.

What are legals?

When people talk about doing the ‘legals’ for their business, they can be referring to many different legal services or requirements. A good starting point is understanding that broadly, business legals fall into in two categories – agreements and regulations.

  • Agreements are the legal contracts and documentation that record the details of your business relationships – such as with your customers, your online users, your suppliers, your staff, your co-founders or your investors.
  • Regulations are rules of law, which you need make sure your business complies with. This includes regulations involved in registering a company, managing employees, privacy regulations, trade marks, and any other industry-specific regulation that apply to your business.

The legal landscape

In order to understand the legal requirements for your business, it is helpful to break your business into a few different areas and the consider the regulations & agreements you’ll need in each area.

We’ve created the visual map below which sets out these areas for you to consider.

business legals map

We’ll dive into the details of each of these areas in the following chapters of this guide. For now, though, we think it’s important to emphasise three, overarching principles for businesses to keep in mind when they are seeing a lawyer.

Why you should consider your legal needs

So what’s the point of addressing your legal needs and what does it achieve?

We think there’s three key reasons to consider.

Reason 1: Avoid Disputes

The first reason is to help prevent disputes down the line. Whether these are between business partners, employees or with customers, a dispute can often spell the death of a small business, and many of these can be avoided by having upfront conversations and documenting everything in writing.

Reason 2: Be Protected

The second reason is to protect your business against legal risks. This includes having the right business structure, having contracts in place to limit your liabilities to customers, protecting valuable assets like intellectual property, and so on.

Reason 3: Get A Good Deal

The third reason is to make sure you’re not signing up to bad deals. We’ve seen countless businesses face major obstacles simply because they didn’t have a lawyer review their key legal documents. So whether it’s your terms and conditions with customers, agreements with your suppliers or your contracts with investors, seeing a lawyer early on can make a big difference in the long run.

In Conclusion…

In this chapter, we’ve learned that there are two key types of legals your business should consider – agreements and regulations – and examined the various areas in your business where legal issues arise. We’ve also explained the key reasons you should care about your legal needs: to avoid disputes, to be protected and to get the best deals you can!

Interested in working with us?

Tell us about your legal issue and we’ll put together a fixed fee quote for you.

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