Every business owner aspires to launch its business for the first time. As an entrepreneur, it’s fulfilling to see your startup or small business finally up and running. But before taking the plunge, there are plenty of things to consider. These include coming up with a business plan, setting your finance, investing in needed resources, hiring the right people, and employing marketing.
But on top of all business considerations are the legal matters. These legal requirements are the most crucial aspects of launching a business. As much as possible, you must stay on top of all these. That way, you can ensure the legitimacy of your business. That said, here are legal matters to consider for starting a business:
1. Business Licenses and Permits
Business licensing is the most important legal matter to ensure the legitimacy of your business. Of course, you want to ensure that you have the license to operate. If your business falls under a federally-regulated field, you must obtain a federally-issued permit. But if not, your business must comply with the state or local business licensing requirements. Also, there are other business permits you must secure to operate. For instance, if you start a delivery service, ensure that your Florida drivers take a permit course online and earn their licenses.
2. Business Structure
Identifying the business structure is imperative. You have to determine and decide what legal composition to have for your business. There are four basic types of business structure, as follows:
- Sole proprietorship: This simplest business structure only has one business owner.
- Partnership: This business structure allows you to work with other business owners known as your partners.
- Limited Liability Company: This consists of LLC members considered self-employed or works as a corporation for tax purposes.
- Corporation: This has various shareholders whose ownership and accountability depend on their investments.
3. Business Name Registration
Keep in mind that you must think of a business name and ensure its valid registration. There are three aspects you must keep in mind. First, have a name for your business entity that must not be similar to other business enterprises. Also, consider applying for a federal trademark through the US Patent and Trademark Office. Lastly, you must have a domain or web address essential for your business website and online visibility. Ultimately, these legal requirements will ensure your business identity and set it apart from other businesses.
4. Legal Contracts
As a business, you will be working with various stakeholders, from your employees to suppliers down to property owners. As such, it’s crucial to come up with legal contracts signed by both parties. A perfect example is the employment contract which details the employees’ duties and the employer’s obligations, including the salary benefits and compensation. Another example is the non-disclosure agreement between you and your supplier, where both parties should foster the utmost confidentiality. Lastly, you must draft contracts with all third-party vendors you’ll be dealing with for your business.
5. Zoning Law
Another important legal consideration is the zoning law. You want to ensure that your business location is within the proper zone. Never assume that it’s okay for your business to operate in a particular area because another enterprise of the same industry runs in the same place. Chances are, this business has gotten a legal exemption that will no longer apply to you. Hence, the best course of action is to check with your local authorities to see if your business will be allowed to operate in a particular zone.
6. Business Insurance Protection
Any business type comes with a risk. As such, insurance is essential for the protection of your business. However, business insurance varies from one type to another. For one, consider getting general liability insurance to secure your business against universal liabilities. However, you can get specific coverage depending on the nature of your business. While product liability insurance covers your business for defective products, professional liability insurance covers professional negligence. You can also get commercial property insurance for protecting your property and facilities from fire, flood, and other natural calamities.
At this point, you now know what legal considerations to make for starting a business. Be sure to consider the legal matters outlined above, from business licenses and permits to legal contracts to business insurance protection. It’s best to consult with legal professionals to assist you in complying with legal requirements. Working with legal experts ensures your utmost legal compliance and helps you avoid legal ramifications. Ultimately, you’ll be able to have a successful launching of your business within the bounds of the law!