In 2021, there are over 30 million U.S. businesses. Knowing how to select the best attorney for your business will help you avoid costly mistakes.
Small businesses are responsible for employing 59.9 million people. With a workforce that large, small business owners are likely to need legal help at some point or another.
Your lawyer makes a big difference to your business’s future. Therefore, it’s important to learn how to find a competent lawyer on your own.
Here’s what you should know about hiring an attorney for your business.
Consider Your Needs
Whenever you’re looking to hire an attorney, think about why you need one. Identifying your specific legal needs is the first step of knowing when to hire an attorney.
Some people need an attorney for business contract development. Others need one to help establish their business structure such as an LLC or partnership.
There’s actually a wide array of advantages to reap from hiring a small business lawyer. Learn more about these benefits via the previous link.
Hiring an attorney involves looking for one with a relevant specialty. Business lawyers often specialize in areas related to employment, taxes, litigation, real estate, and more.
For instance, let’s say you need a lawyer to defend your intellectual property. Then you’d look for a lawyer that specializes in intellectual property law. The same applies if you wanted to get a patent.
As of 2021, there are over 1.3 million U.S. lawyers, all with individual specialties. A lawyer’s legal specialty gives you insight into their work and experience. That’s why it’s so important to act on this next tip:
Years of Experience
Knowing how to hire an attorney means finding out how many years of experience they have. The more experienced a lawyer is, the more likely they are to handle your case well.
You’re taking a chance if you hire a lawyer who’s fresh out of law school and legal training. Sure, the price might be competitive, but legally, it puts you at a disadvantage.
Find a business lawyer who has at least 5 years of experience. Keep in mind that it takes over a decade to complete one’s legal education and training.
When you start Googling “attorney near me” and find lawyers, start comparing their fee structures and amounts. They’ll usually charge an hourly rate or a flat rate, which is the rarer of the two.
Lawyers also charge contingency fees. That means if you win any money, they’ll take a percentage of it as compensation.
It’s okay to define your budget boundaries in advance. Nonetheless, it’s good to give yourself some leeway in case the better option costs a bit more.
The Best Attorney Has the Best Reputation
Always thoroughly examine the online reputation of every attorney you consider hiring. The best attorney will have good reviews to show for their success.
Remember: Read the bad reviews along with the good ones. They’ll give you more insight into a lawyer’s patterns of behavior and business.
Educate yourself—check out our legal articles. It’ll prepare you for if/when you need a lawyer yourself.