Take Care of Legal Priorities When Launching Your Small Business - dummies

Take Care of Legal Priorities When Launching Your Small Business

By Clive Rich

Part of Law for Small Business For Dummies Cheat Sheet

During the launch stage of your small or medium-size enterprise (SME), you need to consider a bunch of legal issues. A whole host of issues are going on at this stage in your small business, including:

  • Hiring additional members of the team, whether as contractors or employees (make sure that you know the legal difference).

  • Acquiring or creating key assets (software, content and so on).

  • Creating a marketing plan.

  • Adding non-execs to give you more perspective and wider contacts.

  • Developing software – whether for your website, apps or programs.

  • Developing and launching a Minimum Viable Product to get you into the marketplace.

You have plenty to do just juggling these priorities. But don’t forget your legal priorities at this stage, otherwise all those plates you’re spinning risk crashing to the ground. Here’s your legal to-do list during this stage of your business development:

  • Creating contracts for your contractors and consultants.

  • Creating contracts for your employees.

  • Implementing share option schemes for employees or anyone else you need to incentivise.

  • Adding non-exec agreements.

  • Hiring temporary staff.

  • Setting out your online trading terms/privacy terms.

  • Complying with trading laws, such as the Electronic Commerce Directive, 2002.

  • Complying with employment legislation (for example, Health and Safety at Work, 1974, Pensions Act, 2008, Data Protection Act, 1998).

  • Contracting for premises for your business.

  • Reviewing and protecting your intellectual property, such as the potential for trademarks, patents, design rights, database rights and copyrights.

  • Entering into software-development contracts.