Small Business Owners: When to Call in a Commercial Lawyer

29 March 2017
 Categories: , Blog


As a small business owner, it is likely you are facing a range of cost, and so the last thing you will want to do is to add to your outgoings by hiring a commercial lawyer. However, while there are plenty of tasks you can complete yourself, there are some things that are better left to a legal professional. Below is a guide to the tasks you should attempt yourself alongside details of jobs you should leave to a lawyer who specialises in commercial law.

Jobs you can complete yourself

There are many tasks which you should be able to take care of yourself without needing the assistance of a commercial lawyer. These are:

  • Creating a business plan
  • Applying for a business licence
  • Registering at the tax office
  • Setting up agreements with your partners

Completing these tasks yourself can help you to save money.

Jobs which will require a commercial lawyer

For more complex legal issues, you will need to instruct a commercial lawyer to act on your behalf. Below is a guide to 3 occasions when you should definitely call in a commercial law specialist.

1) Employee lawsuit: If a former or current employee makes a legal claim against your company and accuses you of discrimination or of negligence which resulted in an accident, you should contact a commercial lawyer immediately. A commercial lawyer will be able to build a case for the defence so you can protect your business interest in court.

2) Environmental protection: If your company has been accused of breaking environmental protection law, due to a chemical leak or improper disposal of waste, it may be subject to significant fines and penalties. A commercial lawyer will be able to present evidence of any mitigating circumstances which may reduce the penalty your company faces.

3) Breach of state or federal law: If a government agency launches an investigation into your business operation, you will need a commercial lawyer who can explain the charges and recommend the best course of action.

If you are worried about the cost of hiring a commercial lawyer, you should ask the law firm if you can sign a consultation agreement. A consultation agreement means that the lawyer can be called upon to offer advice or check documents when needed but is not retained on a full-time basis. If you would like to find out more about commercial law, you should contact a law firm today.