The Benefits of In-House Legal Counsel for Small and Family Businesses

It should come as no surprise that large corporations need to have their own legal team to deal with the many legal issues that arise during their operations. Software giant Microsoft, for example, maintains a legal department of 459 lawyers and an additional 500 in legal support staff. In the past, its legal budget has come close to $1 billion. In addition to their own in-house counsel, the company also turns to a number of law firms for additional services.

While small businesses and family-run enterprises may not require quite the amount of legal services as a large corporation like Microsoft, they too can benefit from having a cadre of lawyers to which they can turn for all of their legal needs. They do not have to seek out attorneys for any legal issue they may encounter, but can quickly turn to one source.

Additionally, in-house counsel can develop an expertise by regularly working with the same company and people, enabling them to respond to the company’s needs quickly and cost-effectively. Small business owners should consult a Monmouth County business lawyer for more information on the benefits of retaining in-house counsel for all of their legal needs.

More In-House Benefits for Small Businesses

Most small businesses do not require a full-time, permanent in-house legal team that operates from the company’s location. Instead, a more flexible approach is beneficial for small businesses. Experienced business attorneys can act as the company’s in-house counsel by providing the same services and quick response time as the full time legal teams that larger corporations have, but without the large bills.

In-house attorneys for small businesses can be on stand-by to provide services like the following:

  • Drafting, reviewing and negotiating contracts like the purchase or sale of goods or services
  • Responding to the company’s employment needs, including defending against employee lawsuits and drafting workplace policies and procedures
  • Protecting and litigating claims related to intellectual property
  • On-call availability when issues or questions arise during the day-to-day operations of the business
  • Reviewing and negotiating commercial leases
  • Interpreting or modifying shareholder or partnership agreements that govern the business

A small business benefits by having a group of lawyers focused on all of that business’s needs. The lawyers develop an understanding of the business’s goals and methods better than when the business turns to a law firm on a case-by-case, ad-hoc basis. The two sides can also agree on a steady pricing plan, as opposed to a pay-by-the-hour or by-the-project arrangement. To learn more how small and family businesses can benefit from having their own in-house counsel, contact a Monmouth County business attorney at Garland & Mason L.L.C..