The speed at which new technologies become adopted on a mass scale is staggering. The smartphone is just 10 years old, yet they are nearly ubiquitous across the United States. Slower to take root, but perhaps no less transformative, is the concept of electronic signatures.
Perhaps one of the greatest difficulties any public U.S. or multi-national corporation faces is walking the fine line between protecting business efforts for growth and fulfilling regulatory requirements on transparency. The fact that standards vary greatly from one government to the next only makes things more challenging.
If you own a successful family business, you are aware of the importance of succession planning. It can ensure that the enterprise will be in good hands if you or another top executive needs to make a sudden exit. A transparent succession plan also helps prevent disputes between family members involved in the company.
With the economy in good shape, many owners of established businesses may be looking to sell. Especially when a business is profitable, there may be a real opportunity to sell at a satisfying price.
When you are starting a new business, there are a number of rights and obligations to consider. These depend in part on which business entity you choose to operate, such as a corporation, partnership or limited liability company. They also depend on the type of business you plan to operate and where. Your new business may require permits, proper zoning, a particular license and/or a surety bond. Without these, your business could operate unlawfully and be subject to fines or other enforcement efforts.
If you are starting a new business, you may already have decided that a limited liability company (LLC) is the right choice for you. Your choice of business entity should be based on your business goals, the investment you require, your preferred tax structure and an understanding of the liabilities of each entity type. Once you have chosen an LLC, however, how do you go about setting it up?
Whether your organization is planning to rent new business premises, purchase a facility or expand into a new location, there are legal issues involved that a real estate agent is not in a good position to help you with. Hiring an attorney to negotiate, draft or review documents and to research zoning and other issues can save you a great deal of time and trouble. Unlike real estate agents and many other professionals, your attorney is legally obligated to act in your interests.
Contracts are promises that are enforceable by law. Every business would like to ensure that its agreements will stand up in a court of law. What are some of the issues that could stand in its way?
If your company is considering relocating, you should do so based on business needs. Still, it's important to understand all the variables. For example, if you lease your current premises and your lease isn't up, you don't want to keep paying on your old lease as you take on a new one.
In our last post, we began a list of due diligence questions to ask when purchasing an existing business. Today, we add additional examples of what you should cover to ensure you aren't taken by surprise.