Listen to the Course Introduction
- m4a Audio
Law is complicated. It is complicated because it affects every part of a business. If you own a business, run a business, or work for a business, you are affected in some way by the law. If it isn’t the regulations or statutes created by Congress, it is the Constitution. If it isn’t those things, it is the way things have always been that has been passed down since the founding of our country (this is called the “Common Law”).
As a lawyer, I work to help people understand their rights, to understand the legal that affects every decision they make in business and in life. To make it easier to understand legal by translating it to English. Though law is complicated, it is not impossible to understand. In fact, our entire legal system was designed to be understood by citizens. It has grown past that to where you need to study a lot to understand how all of the laws fit together, but it is still possible to understand the legal that affects your business everyday. My goal is to help you not only protect your business for growth, but also to help you understand the legal that affects your business.
Legal is vast. The potential legal issues facing any business are countless. Some lucky businesses never experience any legal issues. Some businesses, despite doing everything right, see more than their fair share. Though there are many needs for your business. Many legal items you need to cover to secure your legal foundation, sometimes, it does not all need to happen at once. Sometimes, you need to set a course and a timeline for building your foundation. Sometimes, building a Firm Foundation requires working in stages. Especially when you are working on your growing business.
In order to best understand how to make that work for you, we should consider the three pillars of a firm foundation. Each of these categories provides certain protections. Each matters in your business, but prioritizing what needs to happen next (whether to get the most out of your dollars or your time) involves understanding how they all work together and how you are laying the foundation for the rest of your business.
If you are trying to build something that will last, a good place to start is by documenting every relationship in your business.
Just like with any other type of building, your foundation must be built before anything else can be built on top of it. There are three primary categories of relationships that protect the foundation of your business.
The three pillars of a Firm Foundation are listed below. To learn more about any one of the pillars, just click on the heading.
Foundational legal protection is for the owners. It is the most important legal protection you can have in your business. It is what gives you the liability protection to protect your personal assets from your business assets. This protection is essential to making decisions in your business. If you know that you have properly protected the owners of the business, you can make decisions in your business knowing the owners are protected. Even if that protection is from each other. The foundation of your business should always come first.
Internal protection is protection of the business from those who work in the business. This can be employees, independent contractors, and any other service provider whose services or products are invaluable to the operation of the business. These documents are what keep the business moving forward. Protecting your business internally is an important part of your legal protection, but those who work in the business are often the ones who are the most loyal. That means, practically, those legal documents can be the last in the sequence of protection. There are many natural protections that exist internally. That does not make it any less important, but it does help make prioritization of your legal needs a bit easier.
External protection is protection of your business from clients, customers, prospects, and any other threat that does not involve the ownership or those working in the business. This is essential for the liability protection of any business. Most liabilities come from outside. Most protections need to act as a shield around the business. These protections can be anything from ensuring payment from your customers to making sure there is no intellectual property infringement on your website. Most of the legal needs of a business (after the foundation is set right) are external.
Do not think I am placing any less importance on any one of these elements of your business foundation. But, breaking the types of relationships into these categories can help you determine how protecting your business for growth can be accomplished. Viewing your legal in these categories can give you the freedom to work on your legal in the same way you build the other systems in your business. Strategically. You know where your hurdles are. You know where the holes are in your business. Most importantly, you know where you are going and how your are building your business.