Business Lawyers Not Just For Big Business – Legal Advice l Canny Group

Business Lawyers… Not just for big business!

Small or big, every business needs a lawyer.  Why?  You may ask.  Business lawyers provide crucial assistance to protect and prosper your business, from protecting against basic copyright violations to helping you enter complex business contracts, business lawyers will assist you with all legal matters facing your business.  We have put together everything you need to take into consideration when choosing the right lawyer for your business needs, introducing, Business Lawyers Not Just For Big Business – Legal Advice l Canny Group.

Whilst understanding what business lawyers do and their importance is easy, choosing the perfect business lawyer for you may be somewhat a daunting and exhausting task.

SO… WHERE DO I START?

The first step to choosing the right business lawyer is to consider factors such as their qualifications, experience, reputation and personality.

Personal referrals provide some reliability and may be a good place to start, however, it is important to first consider the type of work conducted by the lawyer.  The lawyer that represented your friend in an employment matter may not be the best lawyer for your business.

WHAT ARE THEIR QUALIFICATIONS + EXPERIENCE?

Australian lawyers must be registered to practice law in Victoria and even if a lawyer is not listed as an accredited specialist in the area of business or commercial law it does not mean they are not experienced in that field.

The best business lawyers will have extensive experience in the specific area your business needs help in.

If you are unsure about which area your business needs help in or want a general business lawyer to help with future legal issues, consider comparing business lawyers in your area to determine which lawyer can offer the most effective services.  Perhaps you could ask the lawyer for examples of where they have assisted clients in the same industry as yours determine their reputation and experience.

Considering asking the following questions to determine their level of experience and suitability to your business:

  • What areas of law do you help most of your clients with?
  • What is the size and industry of your typical business law client?
  • How long have you been practicing business law?
  • If there are other lawyers working on my matter, what are their primary areas of practice?

IS BIGGER ALWAYS BETTER?

Large law firms generally have a wide range of team members who have had experience in a variety of different matters, but this also means they have lots of clients they need to divide their time between.  If you are seeking a personalised services that prioritises your business, it may be beneficial to choose a smaller firm as they are likely to devote more time to working on your business and are able to provide a more personalised service.

There are pros and cons of both large and small firms.  It may be useful to consider the type of legal matters you will need to discuss with your lawyer and compare this to experience that lawyer can provide for you.

You may want to inquire about their current workload and how much time they can commit to you and your business.  This will give you a better understanding about the type of service you will be receiving.

WHAT ARE THE LEGAL STEPS INVOLVED IN MY MATTER?

If you have a specific legal issue, it is important to ask what legal steps are involved in your matter.  The lawyer is unlikely to give you a precise answer, however, it will give you an idea of the time required to finalise your matter, the information you will need to provide and the costs associated with the work that will be undertaken by the lawyer.

CONFLICT OF INTEREST

It is also important to ask the lawyer if they have any conflicts of interest with your business.  if the lawyer has several clients within the same business industry, there is a possibility that the lawyer may have represented one of your suppliers or competitors creating a conflict of interest.

Lawyers have a responsibility to not create a conflict of interest between any new client and past or current clients.  That way, all parties are represented equally and the service provided is not tainted with confidential information.

PERSONALITY

Once you have determined which firm or lawyer you would like to engage the next step is to determine if your lawyer’s personality will be suited to you and your needs.

Not only must your lawyer understand and be willing to learn about your business, their personality and style must match yours so that your instructions and their advice is understood by you.  It is vital that you feel comfortable with your attorney and their style of work.

Another important consideration is the lawyers level of professionalism.  Professionalism is more than providing prompt responses to your emails and returning your phone calls.  Your lawyer must be well prepared and work zealously to protect and grow your business, providing timely and accurate advice.

Avoid basing your decision on a phone call and consider meeting the lawyer in person.  During your consultation pay close attention to their professionalism and communication and that they have understood your needs and instructions.

FEE STRUCTURE

We all know lawyers can be expensive and if you are a small business owner this could be one of your main concerns.  For this reason, it is important to discuss the fess structure with your potential business lawyer.

If you intend to work on several legal issues, ask if they are willing to charge a lower rate for increased volume of work and whether there are any additional charges for administration work such as postage and access to external resources.

Lawyers are required to provide you with a costs disclosure outlining expected costs; however, this is an estimate only and other costs may be added as the matter progresses.  Costs can be increased for unexpected work that needs to be completed or if you change your instructions.

CANNY LEGAL + YOUR BUSINESS NEEDS

The best business lawyer is the lawyer you feel most comfortable sharing your private information with and welcoming them to become part of your business.

We understand that running a business can be extremely successful.  Canny Group is able to offer their clients a cohesive service where clients have access to our lawyers, accountants, financial advisors and our NDIS plan managers.  Our team of professionals work together to ensure our clients receive the most efficient and effective advice to grow and protect all aspects of your business.  Our priority is to ensure clients receive high quality and stress-free advice.

Get in touch with our Legal team today for a free consultation to discuss your business plans and to find out how we can help you!

 

Malsha Fernando – Law Clerk

Katherine Taylor – Solicitor l BCriminology (History), LLB