If you are starting a business, in addition to meeting with bankers, financiers and other business owners, you should find and begin a relationship with an attorney. During the start up process, you may have noticed that there are legal implications to virtually every decision you make.
What legal form will your business have? A sole proprietorship, a partnership, a corporation or a limited liability company? Depending on your business, they may all have advantages and disadvantages. An attorney can help you navigate to find the best fit for your business.
You are likely to encounter a broad range of legal issues, from the contents of your contracts to potential HR compliance matters. And there are always tax implications that accompany many of your decisions.
It is important that you make your decisions based on the knowledge and understanding that an attorney can provide, but the other reason you want an attorney with you and your business from the beginning is the relationship it allows you both to build.
In choosing an attorney, you should be certain you would be able to have a close and forthright relationship with this person. They will know very intimate details of the functioning of your business and you may need to rely on them during stressful times.
The longer-term your relationship, the better able they are to understand both the big-picture of your business and the fine-grained minutiae. By maintaining this relationship, even to the point of having regular, monthly meetings, you may wind up saving money.
By working with an attorney who has a deep understanding of your business, you can quickly discuss issues with them, where they have a context, and can provide you with meaningful advice immediately, without the need for research or long interviews.
A long-term relationship allows them to know you and your business and enables them to respond in a way that a new attorney meeting you for the first time simply cannot match.