Mistake #5 in Starting a Small Business in Canada: Not Getting a Lawyer for your Business

Mistake #5 in Starting a Small Business: Not Getting a Lawyer for your Business

Continued from Mistake #4: Not Being Adequately Insured

Mistake #5. Not Getting a Lawyer for your Business

As the owner of a business, you would likely never try to do all of your own accounting, computer support, and cleaning – you would probably hire someone. After all, you are there to run the business part of your endeavour – that is what you know, that is what you do well, and that is why you started your business. When it comes to legal matters, however, many small business owners seem to think differently (at least at the outset). Despite the complexity, intricacy, and sheer volume of detail involved in legal matters, numerous business owners try to do their own legal work without a lawyer.

The other four mistakes are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to some of the legal matters faced by small business owners. Every business has its own set of issues to consider: contract law, agency law, employment law, human rights law, intellectual property, corporate & commercial law, tax law, zoning law … just to name a few.

As a business owner, you need some basic understanding of the law. There is, however, a difference between having a basic understanding of the most common issues and having a thorough knowledge of every possible legal matter that will affect your business. Lawyers have been trained to find the information for you. Let them help.

Final Words

Starting a small business is always risky. It takes significant effort and forethought. As part of this process, small businesses may make mistakes about legal matters. This happens all the time and can never be completely avoided. That said, some mistakes can be disastrous. Your business may end up incurring substantial expenses that could have been avoided with good legal planning. Dare to be prudent!


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Carole Aippersbach
Carole Aippersbach is a lawyer with the Centre for Public Legal Education in Edmonton, Alberta.

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