DIY? Consultation? When to Hire a Business Lawyer

by Lindsey Dahlberg on March 18, 2013

  • SumoMe

Business lawyers serve a lot of different needs relating to day to day business operations.  They also assist with big picture problems that corporations need help with.  They help with copyright issues, trademarks, taxes and employment matters.

It should be no surprise that business lawyers can get a little pricey – especially if you have a small business with a minimal budget.  Therefore, it is advisable to try and do some legal tasks on your own.

How do you know which tasks you can do yourself and which tasks require the assistance of a professional?

Do It Yourself

Before hiring a lawyer and taking on pricey fees, do a little homework.  See if the legal matters before you can be handled in house by you or one of your employees.

Some legal problems are very complicated and can involve a lot of red tape to navigate through.  Obviously, you’ll want to avoid those!

However, some legal problems are quite straightforward and can be handled easily enough by you.  You’ll need to consult some self-help guides at times, but you shouldn’t have any serious problems.

Legal matters that you should be able to handle on your own include creating a business plan for your company.  You can choose your own business name by crosschecking them against trademarked business names online.  Drafting agreements is doable as well.

You can get your employee tax EIN on your own, and can apply for business permits and pertaining licenses.  A lawyer does not need to help you with hiring employees or independent contractors. Just be sure to research anti-discrimination laws regarding hiring before delving into that area.

You can handle the forms that have to be filled out for the Internal Revenue Service and you can deal with all of the correspondence the IRS throws your way.

Hiring a Business Lawyer

While there is a lot that you can do as a business owner, there are a few tasks where it is worth using a business lawyer.  Your time is money and dealing with complex, time consuming legal matters should be left to experts.

For example, if you are dealing with an audit from the IRS, contact a lawyer.  You don’t want to make mistakes that will cost you even more money.

A lawyer should also be hired in discrimination lawsuits from past, present or prospective employees.  If the government is investigating complaints or you have environmental issues, you’ll need a business lawyer at your side.  A legal professional will be able to facilitate the smooth sale of your company.  And an attorney who specializes in business matters will steer you through the waters of negotiation; acquisition of other companies or their assets will be a breeze.

Consulting a Lawyer

If you are trying to avoid legal costs but need a business lawyer for both help and peace of mind, you can always hire a business lawyer for a consultation.

You, the business owner, will do all of the legal work involved.  Then, you’ll ask the lawyer for a consultation to make sure you have taken all the necessary steps.  The lawyer will give you guidance, tips, advice and suggestions but will not take on any of the legal work himself.


Put yourself in a position to avoid and prevent possible legal issues from arising.  Review your hiring procedures and make sure that your interview questions are full legal.  Do some research on potential legal problems and make the necessary precautions.  Unexpected lawsuits can be devastating for small businesses.

Do Your Homework

Before making any big decisions weigh all of the options carefully.  Can you handle the legal problem yourself or do you need professional help?  If you need professional help, can you get by with a consultation or do you need to hire a business lawyer?

Lindsey Dahlberg

Lindsey Dahlberg

Lindsey Dahlberg works for a business lawyer in Clearwater, Florida. The firm helps businesses – both big and small – with their contracts, business collections, and more.
Lindsey Dahlberg

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