The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor estimates that America has 31 million entrepreneurs. If you belong to this group, you will undoubtedly agree that a lot goes into setting up and running a successful business. Therefore, you will want to take the necessary steps to protect the interests of the enterprise you worked so hard to build. Whether you are setting up a new company or have one up and running, here are some important steps worth taking to protect your company’s interests.
Select the right business entity
Many business experts agree that selecting the right business entity makes all the difference when it comes to guarding against future threats to your brand’s interests. For instance, you can start a business from home as a practical career choice. After all, 50% of American businesses are home-based companies. Individuals usually operate home-based businesses as sole proprietors since this structure is easy. Nevertheless, it may not necessarily be the best option to secure your business. You may be better off leveraging the limited liability structure to protect your assets. It is best to hire an experienced lawyer to help you determine the right corporate and non-corporate structures to find what is best and most protective of your business.
Draft clear and enforceable agreements
Clear and enforceable contracts relevant to your business interests offer immense protection in diverse scenarios. For example, if you own a construction company and are subcontracted to work on a project, ensure that your contractor has a payment performance bond in place to protect your interest. This bond will ensure that you will be paid when the project is completed, even if problems arise. Additionally, set up buy-sell agreements that specify ownership limitations, sales conditions, valuation methods, and other vital considerations in the event of company shake-ups. Non-competition agreements may also come in handy to prevent your staff from competing with you after their employment period expires.
Focus on intellectual property and trade secret protections
Your company’s intellectual property is one of its greatest assets. Therefore, protecting your intellectual property and trade secrets for your enterprise’s best interests is advisable. A name or logo is more than just a matter of personal preference in today’s business environment. Selecting one requires a lot of due diligence to ensure that your intellectual property, intangible assets, and business identity are adequately secured. An attorney can help you evaluate the trademarks and copyrights of your company’s unique works, products, or services in the marketplace. They can also help you leverage particular employment contracts and restrictive agreements like confidentiality agreements to guard against internal threats to your intellectual property.
Stay on top of industry-specific restrictions
It is common knowledge that all businesses operate within industry-specific restrictions. Violating these restrictions can have severe legal consequences for your company, affecting its interests. For instance, OSHA regulations apply to many private sector employers and employees, and failure to comply with the rules can lead to severe fines and other legal consequences. Similarly, you will have to stay on top of licensing or technology development agreements if you are in the tech industry. Likewise, health care and medical law cannot be ignored when starting or running a medical practice whose interest you intend to protect.