Making sure your new business is legal

By Henry Brown

When it comes to starting your new small business, have you thought about how you should be looking at protecting yourself legally? In this day and age, it can be easy to believe the words of others. Unfortunately, there are some unscrupulous people out there who will prey on those with little or no knowledge of how things should work.

For this reason, it is always better to protect yourself and your new business from the start. When it comes to legal business development, you want to make sure you are covered from day one and that you also have measures in place to protect yourself as your business grows.

Get everything in writing.

This might seem like a simple concept but it is more important than you think. Translate that call into a written document or have terms sent via email. This will verify that all parties involved know what exactly to expect and what will happen in the event of a dispute.

Draw up any legally binding contracts with a third party to ensure you have added protection and make sure everyone fully understands everything they are agreeing to. This removes any ambiguity.

Intellectual property

You want to protect any work you do on and offline. Unfortunately, in the online world, content ownership can become blurred as people reuse and replicate others’ work. If you are producing content, designs, logos and anything else that will identify your company, you need to be trademarking it. Doing this from day one will make sure you are protected from the beginning.

Trademarks and copyrights protect your business and provide legal clarity over ownership.

Keep paperwork up to date

Keeping paperwork up to date is essential for any business, whether it is your yearly tax return, employee contracts or client contracts or invoices. Having a robust filing system in place will make sure you are ahead of the game should any legal issues arise.

Knowledge is key

Arming yourself with as much legal knowledge as you can will give you a leg up when it comes to many different areas of your company and the law. Knowing where you stand on the basics at least is preferable to no knowledge, especially when dealing with members of the public or employees.

Knowing that you aren’t breaking any laws or mandatory regulations is a priority. So make sure you look up where you stand legally on different aspects of your company if you cannot recruit an expert to give you the best advice possible to make your future decisions legal.

If you are ever in doubt as to if you are running your business legally or you need extra legal support, then you need to contact a legal professional immediately. They can give you expert advice and make sure you are up to date and following all the legalities in place concerning your business.

The last thing you want is to fall foul of the law due to gaps in your knowledge and lack of action on your part.


Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop, he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

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