How to Find Small Business Lawyer
Having a good lawyer onboard can help your small business save costs in the long run. As a small business owner, you probably know too well just how complicated things can get and securing someone to help you through legal challenges is a price worth paying.
Your small business attorney can provide valuable assistance and counseling when it comes to many aspects of the business. Some, but not all, include:
- Forming a business entity, such as a C-corporation or limited liability company (LLC)
- Lease of a commercial building or space
- Handling a capital venture bid
- Employee issues and labor law compliance
- Federal trademark and copyright protection
- Litigation if you are sued
Searching for a Small Business Lawyer
Meet with several business attorneys before you hire an attorney or firm. To scope out your options, here are a few ways to get started.
- Ask people you know personally or through business networking. If you know someone who owns or runs a business in the same industry, that would be ideal. But, recommendations from trusted friends or family members can also help you get started.
- Do some research on the American Bar Association (ABA) website. A section titled “Hire a Lawyer”provides several search tools including for finding ABA offices in each state to contact for assistance.
- Go online to find local attorneys to consider. Some website examples include FindLaw and Avvo. Be sure to check references.
The ABA website can help you find out if a lawyer has had any disciplinary actions filed against them.
Ask the Right Questions
Once you have several candidates to consider, meet with each of them; many attorneys offer a free initial consultation.
- What kind of small business experience do you have?
- How do you estimate costs? (Hourly or per diem, a flat fee, monthly retainer or value billing, etc.)
- Do you provide monthly itemized bills?
- What expenses would I be asked to pay for?
- Do you offer a discount for prompt payments?
Then ask yourself: Do I like this person? It’s also important to be compatible.
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