Legal complications are part of running a business, especially for leaders still learning the ropes. That’s why leaders need to be ready to prevent and manage these concerns. Whether you are the CEO of a large corporation or the lone founder of a new startup, there are a few areas you need to address to avoid trouble.
Any building that is owned or used by a business can be subject to building codes. These codes may be based on city, state or county jurisdiction depending on the location. In any case, there are numerous requirements regarding the safety and utility of work spaces. Many companies are also required to have any modifications, constructions, or improvements approved by an inspector.
The way that companies register themselves has major legal, financial, and privacy implications. The process for entity formation is usually very simple, but setting it up in the best way for your particular objectives is not. That’s why new owners should talk to a business lawyer about the ideal type of entity, tax status, and ownership for their needs.
Licenses and Permits
Licensing and permits depend on what, where, and how a company does its business. Food trucks often need permits to use certain public spaces throughout the week. Doctors and teachers need to be licensed by their professional board. Only people with a certain type of license can drive commercial vehicles in the United States. Do your research and talk to other people in the industry to learn more about this.
Trademark violations and disputes are a legal hot-spot for businesses, especially those that invest in their web presence. These lawsuits often don’t lead anywhere as long as you handle complaints promptly and professionally. The best way to avoid trademark and copyright disputes is to make absolutely sure you have the rights to use any material, whether it’s writing, pictures, or video, before publishing it.
Employment is another common area of legal concern for businesses. Wrongful terminations, harassment complaints, and negative interactions with customers are just a few examples of potential problems. The only way to really address issues with employee conduct or relations is to develop and enforce policies to create a more positive workplace culture.
The prospect of legal problems should keep you cautious, but not afraid. Starting or running a company always has challenges and some of them are usually legal in nature. However, these issues are never as intimidating when you have support from capable and experienced legal professionals.
Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and walks in the park with her husky, Snowball.