How Should A Company Deal With Its Legal Issues?
Not using an attorney
Failing to set up the right business structure
Not having terms and conditions policies to which customers agree to be bound
Failure to follow business tax laws
Inappropriate/incomplete contracts with outside vendors
Failure to get the proper documentation on employees
Failure to get non-disclosure and non-compete agreements
Not getting copyrights, patents, and trademarks
At the highest level, the greatest role of an executive management team is to create and preserve value in the business. From product development to marketing, to sales, to business development, opening new business lines and markets, streamlining old ones and fending off competition, these are all strategies for creating and preserving value in a business. Keen understanding of the business and strategic thinking are tools that the executive brings to bear in all these areas to maximize that value.
There is significant value to be gained or lost in how you deal with the issues that are legal in nature. They are just as surely a part of your business as marketing and sales, they can have just as big an impact on your bottom line as an increase in productivity on the shop floor, and how effectively you address them is hugely significant relative to your competition.
There are several key aspects of a management team that effectively addresses the legal issues in its business.
Managers understand how legal issues intersect with the business strategy. There are legal aspects to every corporate strategy; law is not separate and apart from the business strategy. Good management recognizes the importance of the law to the Company’s overall success and, although not a lawyer, understands the legal trends and how they impact the business.
Good management accepts responsibility for managing all aspects of their business. Management doesn’t delegate decision-making for legal issues; legal issues aren’t “thrown over the fence” to the lawyer.
There is a relationship with a lawyer or group of lawyers who understand the business and have an overall view of the legal issues in the business. That lawyer is brought in to business discussions early and often before the problem is a “fire.” The lawyer is a business partner and counselor, rather than a cop.
The legal function is viewed as other business functions from the standpoint of strategy that aligns with the business, budgetary accountability, and striving for process improvement.
Why Outsourcing Legal Counsel Makes Good Business Sense
General Counsel Services can be a practical, flexible, cost-effective, and innovative solution for any company or start-up.
If you run a small business or start-up, the odds are good that you will require the services of a legal professional. Whether for simple articles of incorporation or legal counsel on complex private equity deals, every business has or will at some point require the services of dependable, knowledgeable, and trustworthy legal counsel.
Unfortunately, dependable, knowledgeable, and trustworthy legal advice, counsel, and services are both difficult to find and expensive. For many small to medium-sized businesses, retaining a full-service law firm or hiring in-house legal expertise is out of the question. Retaining a lawyer from a traditional law firm can quickly become a significant expense.
That’s where General Counsel Services will help.
Instead of expending valuable resources on traditional leveraged law firms or paying huge salaries and benefits required for an in-house team of legal experts, many businesses can now take advantage of professional legal experts at a fraction of the cost.
General Counsel Services require a close business, and working relationship - which means finding the right GC for you is critical. In a typical GC-client setup, the GC is a private practitioner who performs the services of a General Counsel for several companies on a contract basis, and not as an employee. The fees and hourly rates for such legal services are much lower than those of comparable outside leveraged law firms, as much as 40% – 60% lower. In return, a GC provides general legal counsel on-demand.
How Do Outside General Counsel Services Fuel Business Growth?
General Counsel services change the nature of the game and even the playing field for small companies looking for affordable legal resources. General Counsel Services can be a practical, flexible, cost-effective, and innovative solution for any company or start-up.
Legal firms that provide General Counsel services can leverage economies of scale and their in-house synergies to provide world-class legal services to just about any client. This level of legal expertise and access to legal resources would typically not be available or accessible to the average small to medium-sized business.
Following are some of the ways General Counsel Services help drive small business growth:
General Counsel Services allow companies to remain agile and respond quickly to shifting business conditions.
General Counsel Services can handle the large volume of day-to-day legal tasks quickly, efficiently, and at a fraction of the fees charged by conventional law firms.
Reduced legal fees and improved efficiency means more resources can be allocated to the core business thereby driving company growth.
General Counsel service firms provide expert legal personnel to the client site. This personnel allocation reduces the burden of bureaucracy on the client firm while reducing legal liability and risk exposure.
Expert on-demand legal counsel is readily available. High-quality technical work can be accomplished without the hiring, vetting, onboarding, and training necessary for inside counsel. Unlike traditional outside counsel provided by a traditional law firm, fees are substantially reduced.
General Counsel services free up time and resources that can then be allocated towards innovation and ideas.
When seeking quality legal counsel, businesses have options beyond retaining a traditional law firm or hiring expensive in-house counsel. General Counsel Services can provide superior legal knowledge, valuable business insights, and perspective on demand and at a fraction of the cost of traditional legal services.