Posted on March 20, 2019 in Business Law
What Do Business Attorneys Do?
FAQ’s With Roy Oppenheim
Full Transcript: Hi, Roy Oppenheim here. One of the questions we sometimes get is, “What do business attorneys do?” And that’s a good question. Of course, it depends what kind of business you have. Do you have a small business that’s a sole proprietorship, that has no employees?
How Big Is Your Business?
Do you have a medium-sized business that has 10 or 15 employees with a bunch of independent contractors? Or do you have a large business with maybe over 100 employees? And so, obviously depending on how large your business is and how sophisticated and complex your business is, you will still probably need an attorney. Now, if you’re a sole proprietor, you know, the first question is why aren’t you incorporated?
How Are You Protecting Yourself & Business?
Why aren’t you an LLC? How are you protecting yourself from liability? What kind of insurance policies do you have? And of course, that flows through to your taxes. You know, are you paying taxes twice as a C corporation, or are you only paying taxes once is an S corp. or as an LLC? And then, if you’re in an LLC as a sole proprietor, are there other shareholders or members of your LLC? In Florida. Watch Full Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4LmLeYQ1dAM
If you’re not and you’re a sole proprietor LLC, meaning a single purpose LLC, single person LLC, you may not have liability protection that you think you have. Your accountant probably told you to form the LLC, but he probably didn’t tell you that you probably don’t have the protection if someone sues the company, they’re also going to probably sue you. And so the question is, you know, how do you manage all these different risks? And so the first thing the lawyer does is helps figure out what your risks are, and how to mitigate those risks.
And the next thing that they do is, you know, you look at your contracts, your contracts that you’re entering into with vendors and your contracts that you’re entering into with customers. Those contracts are all negotiable. They all have to be drafted. And they all have to make sure that you’re properly protected. Then of course, if you have employees, now it starts to get complicated. You know, are you following all the laws concerning the way you treat employees in terms of overtime, sexual harassment, age discrimination?
What Do Business Attorneys Do?
It goes on and on. Are you following all those rules or requirements? And as the more employees you get, the more complicated those rules become. And so, your lawyer is going to, of course, make sure that you’re protected in all those areas. If you have independent contractors, have they signed non-disclosure agreements? Have they signed confidentiality agreements?
Do you have non-competition agreements? I could go on and on. And then of course, assuming you become successful, you will have a target on your back and you’ll eventually be sued. You won’t be sued necessarily for something you did wrong. You’ll be sued because you have a target on your back. And once you understand that, you’ll need to make sure that you have a business lawyer who understands that also and can help you navigate through those risks. I always tell clients that it’s a badge of honor when they start getting sued as a business because it means that people perceive them as successful.
You don’t sue unsuccessful people because you never collect. Only people who are successful get sued. And so, if you do get sued, obviously you want to defend yourself. At the same time, you may want to sue someone; maybe someone who screwed you out of a contract. Maybe a client of yours went bankrupt. I mean, you know, there could be numerous issues where you’re going to need an attorney. You could have an employee who steals clients or customers, or steals confidential information.
You have intellectual property that you want to protect, whether its patents, trademarks, copyrights, it goes on and on. I’m not listing everything here. I’m just giving you an example of my average day as a business lawyer, as a real estate lawyer, what I, you know, assist clients with on a daily basis. And of course, you have all the regulations that you have to go through, depending on whether, you know, you have a liquor license, whether you a restaurant, whether you sell stuff that people eat, and whether you have cars on the road, trucks on the road, whether you have drones in the air.
I mean it goes on and on in terms of what kinds of regulations and rules you’re going to need to follow. That’s what a business lawyer does.
Roy Oppenheim is a sought-after legal expert on issues relating to real estate, real estate litigation and commercial litigation. In 2009, he started the South Florida Law Blog to address the real estate market and foreclosure crisis. The Blog has been voted the best business and technology blog by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Mr. Oppenheim has been a contributor to Yahoo! Homes, featured on HuffPost Live, FOX News, and Lifetime TV, and quoted in prominent national publications, including USA Today, The New York Times, Huffington Post, WSJ, US News and World Report, The Financial Times, the National Law Journal,Florida Bar News, Sun Sentitnel and Miami Herald. Most recently, Mr. Oppenheim hosted an Ask Me Anything on Real Estate on Reddit. Mr. Oppenheim has also co-authored two law review articles: Deconstructing The Black Magic of Securitized Trusts, and The Emperor’s New Clothes.
Mr. Oppenheim founded Oppenheim Law, one of South Florida’s leading boutique law firms in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in 1989 with his wife Ellen Pilelsky, and, in 1994, he co-founded Weston Title & Escrow, a trusted South Florida real estate title company whose multilingual staff provides personal, concierge style service in the areas of real estate closings, title insurance, title searches and escrow services.
Weston Title: https://westontitle.com/
Original Source posted on Oppenheim Law on 3-20-2018: What Do Business Attorneys Do? https://www.oppenheimlaw.com/news-resources/videos/what-do-business-attorneys-do/