Business Lawyer. Business law is an exciting yet diverse career opportunity for an aspiring lawyer. Your job could consist of doing anything from company restructuring and mergers to contract or property law.

Business Lawyer
Business Lawyer

The work is as varied as any business, but in general, your role is to be the guide for businesses and companies in any legal matters.

What Is a Business Lawyer?

Business lawyers are generalists who provide legal advice on just about all aspects of a business. While the size of a company doesn’t necessarily determine if they need a corporate lawyer or a business lawyer, business lawyers are more commonly retained by small- to medium-sized businesses that need a wide range of services.

A business lawyer might help your business navigate copyright or trademark concerns, handle tax issues or work with your CPA to mitigate tax burdens, and review your contracts and employee handbook—all in a day’s work! Business lawyers also help write business plans for potential investors and assist with employment laws.

What Does a Business Lawyer Do?

Here is a list of crucial functions that a business lawyer handles:

  • Permits And Licenses

Almost every business venture requires a license to execute its operations. Whether it is in the bakery, car wash, or baby products, a license is a must! Business lawyers can help you get the requisite permits on time so that you can begin your operations.

  • Contracts

Business contracts are quite complex. Any wrong acknowledgment can land your business in an unfortunate situation. Having a business lawyer by your side will ensure that every clause is professionally scanned, eliminating any chances of confusion.

  • Immigration

Immigration laws are subject to frequent changes. A lot is at stake when an employee travels to another country. Business lawyers are well-informed and well-researched professionals who can smartly manage all the discrepancies and legal formalities about this.

  • Compliances

A business owner needs to comply with an array of legal regulations. Any discrepancy can result in a hefty fine for the owner. A business lawyer will ensure that all the rules and legal formalities have been obeyed on time.

  • Taxes

An experienced business lawyer will effectively handle matters related to local, state, and federal taxes. Though you might also require the services of an accountant here, a business lawyer will ensure that everything falls under the legal limit in the end.

  • Copyright Laws

Every unique business idea or invention can be secured with the help of copyright laws. This will prevent others from stealing or copying this unique business idea. A business lawyer can effectively handle copyright formalities for your business. After all, we all wish to protect our inventions from being stolen or copied.

  • Employee Relations

Employees are rightly considered the backbone of an organization. Business lawyers can help business owners handle sensitive issues related to worker discrimination, payroll, compensation, and much more.

  • Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy issues are very complicated and require expert intervention. A business lawyer can effectively represent your case and will assist you in filing for both individual and corporate bankruptcy.

  • Mergers And Acquisitions

Thinking about buying out a competitor? Being acquired by a bigger company? Finally, looking to join forces with another business? Don’t make the mistake of not having a business lawyer advise and guide you through the process.

How Do I Become a Business Lawyer?

There are several steps to becoming a business lawyer that must be followed in order.

  • Complete An Undergraduate Degree Program

The first step to becoming a business lawyer is earning an undergraduate degree. Most law schools have a mandatory requirement that applicants have a bachelor’s degree before applying. While there isn’t a particular major that is needed, most tend to get them in a related field such as government, history, or economics.

  • Take The Law School Admission Test (LSAT).

The LSAT determines your qualifications to enter law school and assesses your skills rather than your knowledge. You can take the LSAT at the end of your junior year, which gives you time to apply and prepare for law school. You might spend several months reviewing educational materials and doing practice tests before taking the LSAT.

  • Complete Law School

To be a lawyer, you need to have completed three years of law school. You’ll be required to sit for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) first and then get admitted to law school. During your time at law school. You’ll be able to take courses on tax, labor, and corporate law, among others. This education will provide the foundation for your legal career.

  • Get More Practical Experience

While in law school, consider working on some pro bono cases at a firm that specializes in business law. This learning opportunity can help you gain hands-on experience in business law disputes and solutions.

  • Pass The Bar Exam

Lawyers need to pass the bar exam in the state in which they want to practice. Exam content varies by state but typically includes multiple-choice questions or an essay that takes two to three days to complete. You can take practice tests to help you prepare, and most states allow unlimited if not several, attempts.

What Should I Assess When Employing a Business Lawyer?

There are many elements to contemplate when hiring a business lawyer. The following list provides some board guidelines that may assist when scouring for the right business lawyer:

  • Grounds For Hiring

Always understand precisely why an attorney is being hired. This can help focus the above factors, narrow the search, and demonstrate how long the professional relationship should endure. For instance, a startup may want to employ a lawyer to handle everything from filing to raising funds for future employment issues.

In distinction, a small business owner may only need to employ a lawyer for a short period of time, such as when they require immediate guidance on taxes or one-time help filing their corporation’s trademark application.

  • Location

Though not every legal issue will require employing a lawyer who practices in the same state, a person should aim to find one as close to their residence or legal problem as feasible. This way, they will not have to explore a new business attorney if a dispute arises and they need to appear in court. Also, depending on the problem, a local attorney may be a more suitable option if the case involves the laws of a specific jurisdiction.

  • Lawyer Fees

Before officially employing an attorney, ask what their prices are and how they are structured (e.g., flat rate, hourly, etc.). In resuming the above illustration, an individual should not be billed $1,000 per hour to simply file LLC paperwork, but they may be billed at that rate for a prominent corporate union. It may also help to have a budget in mind when searching.

  • Credentials And Specializations

While it may not be necessary to hire the finest lawyer in the nation to file paperwork to create a Limited Liability Company (“LLC”), enterprises involved in multi-billion-dollar mergers will most likely want the most brilliant lawyers haggling on their behalf. Also, a general business attorney can file LLC paperwork, but a party may wish to employ a corporate lawyer for a merger in particular.

Therefore, to narrow down a probe, start skimming for lawyers who specialize in the area of law that the problem falls under and decide whether their diploma (e.g., what law school they graduated from) matters.

  • Investigation

Conduct background research on the lawyer. Read firm biographies, look for customer reviews, speak to other lawyers, ask for suggestions from friends and family, check Legal Match, and so on. Frequently, a person can find a good lawyer through word-of-mouth advice.

  • Firm/Resources

Aside from investigating the lawyer, clients should also analyze their firm and what other help they can bring to the table. For example, can the firm introduce them to possible business associates, prospective clients, or types of lawyers? Find out whether the firm regularly deals with the case at hand and their win rate in the past on such issues.

When To Hire a Business Lawyer

. Your business needs advice or representation in employment disputes.

. They want to avoid employment disputes with employee handbooks and contracts.

. Your business needs advice or representation in tax disputes.

. When your business needs advice on business tax law and tax burden mitigation.

. Your business is being audited or investigated by state or federal authorities.

. You’re planning your business or starting a new business.

. You need advice or representation on patents and other intellectual property.

. Your business is involved in a lawsuit or mediation procedure.

. Your business needs to file a lawsuit or enforce a contract.

Do Business Lawyers Go to Court?

Because there are so many different issues businesses must work through when operating, business lawyers will usually have a general skillset to handle the various types of business-related matters, including litigation.

The Antonoplos & Associates Washington, D.C., business lawyers do whatever they can to avoid the costly and time-consuming litigation process. However, if your case requires litigation, our attorneys have over twenty years of business litigation experience.


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