You work hard to make your small business distinct from other similar operations—especially those in the same industry and/or serving the same type of clientele—after all, differentiation is how you make your business stand out. But when it comes to small business legal blunders, you probably have more in common with your cohorts than you think. If you are planning to run a manual labor business make sure you have a working contract management software. There are many legal missteps for small business owners, but a recent survey identified a list of the five most common.

  1. Taking a do-it-yourself approach

Sure, you can get free legal documents on the Internet, but how do you know what you’re downloading is correct, that it contains everything it should and if the wording is appropriate? And once you have it, do you even know what it says? After all, legalese isn’t a language everybody speaks fluently. You can get this double checked for you by so many sites like public liability insurance provided by constructaquote.com
that there is no real reason to pass it up, it’s not possible to overstate its value.

After all there are people who are willing to guide you and coach your business to the upper level by renting out some business coaches

  1. Not getting it in writing

Now is not the time to go old-school and take a verbal agreement or a handshake approach. Yes, verbal agreements can be binding, but good luck proving the terms of the agreement or that it even existed. Your rock-solid deal can quickly devolve into a you said/they said situation, possibly leaving you on the losing end.

Also hire business plan writers and get the help you need to write  a successful business plan to ensure that the company is properly communicated and managed properly. An additional advantage of getting everything in writing is that the terms are laid out for everyone to evaluate.

  1. Playing it fast and loose with employees

Unfortunately, this happens a lot. Employers get into trouble by cutting corners when it comes to pay, hours, conditions of employment and withholding taxes. This can cause a lot of legal trouble for the employer, but it’s also just bad business. Talking about employees you need to make sure all of them meet requirements for high risk licenses

  1. Not having a buy-sell agreement

If you have co-owners or co-founders, a buy-sell agreement covers what will happen if one of them dies, becomes disabled or ill, wants to sell, goes through a divorce and so on. You need to clarify all of this when everyone is happy, healthy and on good terms. It’s much harder to reach an agreement or achieve a satisfying outcome when the situation has changed or become dire and fraught with emotion. Even though it may seem simple, cover all the critical bases with appropriate legal representation.

  1. Avoiding your accountant until tax time

There’s an old saying, ‘you don’t know what you don’t know’, so don’t wait until tax time to discover your true financial situation. Meet with your account at least quarterly to review your financial performance and operations — whether you’re expanding, adding new products, entering a new territory or market, or having issues with employees — keeping your trusted financial advisor in the loop can help you avoid (potentially costly) mistakes.

6. Not having a data privacy agreement for customers

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a regulation that is intended to strengthen data protection for individuals within European Union (EU) countries. The GDPR went into effect on May 25, 2018. The primary objectives of the GDPR are to give people more control over their personal data, to help protect personal data from the risk of loss, and to unify regulatory privacy and data requirements within the EU.

It is vital that any organization who conducts business in the EU understands the overall design of the GDPR and why preparing their technology and processes now for this new legislation is so critical.

Today’s technology is much different than it was 20 years ago. No one could have predicted how the Internet, smartphones and the widespread use of social media applications such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter could have global implications. The ability for consumers to consent to receive communications is long overdue and increases customer trust and engagement. A segure way to work with your customer’s database is using this compliance solution, PossibleNOW GDPR

With the GDPR implementation, data breaches must now be reported immediately (within 72 hours of the discovery of the breach). The GDPR was also necessary to enact a uniform data security law across the EU. Each EU country will no longer need to pass their own legislation for data security; the GDPR will be the guiding law. However, EU countries can still regulate certain types of data such as health data.

 

Lloyd Priddle
Lloyd has had a very successful career as an accountant, director and author for almost 40 years. Holding post-graduate qualifications in Business, Lloyd has specialised in Business Development, and worked with the Queensland Government and local councils on numerous occasions through association with AusIndustry and the SBAS Natural Disaster Assistance Program. He is also board member of a number of commercial and not-for-profit entities.