Do You Need An Attorney To Start A Business

do you need attorney start business startup company lawyer

When starting an LLC in Missouri, you want to make sure that you start off on the right foot. It's critical both to check that you abide by the laws and regulations associated with starting a business, and to also make sure that you protect your new company from potential future conflicts or losses. Many people find themselves wondering which professionals they should spend money on--particularly as the experts can get expensive. 

What about attorneys? After all, you will need to choose what type of business you are starting, develop documents around the formation of your new business, consider factors like taxes and legal protections, and even draft the templates for the contracts you will use on a daily basis. Starting an LLC in Missouri versus other states may bring about specific considerations. 

Let's consider the reasons you may choose to work with an attorney when you start your business, as well as some reasons why you may choose not to. 

Pros of Using an Attorney to Start a Business 

Even when money is tight, most people would likely say it's not a bad idea to hire an attorney to help out while starting a business. Just to be clear, this doesn't mean you are bringing the attorney on your team full-time. Most attorneys charge by the hour, but they do offer retainer and other pricing packages that center around the common scenarios they encounter when working with small businesses. 

Different structures of businesses like S-corps and partnerships may offer unique benefits as well as complications; an attorney can help bring some perspective to your decision-making process. Depending on where you live, there might be local considerations, and you also could use an expert's real-time, up-to-date insights on recent regulatory updates as well as trends. 

There can be a lot more paperwork involved than you initially anticipated. And while you are busy with all of the various aspects of starting your business, your lawyer is experienced with routinely handling these documents; it will take far less time for them to do the job right than it will for you to research, confirm, and execute. As you think about the costs of hiring a lawyer, remember to consider how much of your time they are freeing up. 

Not all businesses fit into traditional modes of documentation. Working with a lawyer means you get paperwork tailor made to your business. It also means that you have a go-to for questions ranging from trademarking through patents, contract disputes and where you can afford to cut corners to save (without setting yourself up to be in legal hot water). 

Reasons You May Opt Out Of An Attorney To Start A Business 

Particularly if you've started a business before, you might already feel familiar enough with the process to be comfortable handling documents on your own. There are many online resources available with legal templates that you can fill in and customize. If you already know what structure you'd like to start your business in - such as starting an LLC in Missouri - you can easily find the Articles of Organization online and take it from there. There are entire websites dedicated to surfacing template documents for legal purposes, and that even venture into day-to-day contracts, NDAs, and other essential components of business operations. 

Many entrepreneurs like spending the time to learn the legal ins and outs on their own, and find it worth saving the upfront costs that come with hiring an attorney. Additionally, there are free legal resources available to business owners: whether it's local legal "office hours," state resources, local government resources, and even business incubators or other similar organizations, a little bit of research could help you find legal solutions that won't cost you a dime more. 

The Choice Is Yours 

As you're starting an LLC in Missouri, it will be up to you to decide the risk level that you are comfortable with undertaking in favor of saving capital. That said, hiring an attorney as you draft up the necessary documents to form and run your business adds a layer of security. Lawyer-prepared documents are more likely to stand up in court.

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