Reasons a Freelancer May Need a Washington DC Small Business Attorney
Running your own business is great, but working as a freelancer also comes with its share of challenges. Whether it’s ensuring you have enough clients to pay the bills, hunting down outstanding payments, or encountering complications at tax time, freelancing is not necessarily easy. Most freelancers are handling every aspect of their business on their own, which brings a lot of freedom, but also a lot of risk.
If you are a freelancer, there may be situations where you can benefit from legal assistance. Here are some of the reasons you may need to hire a Washington DC small business lawyer.
Draft and Review Contracts
A business attorney can help you draft the contracts you need when you’re taking on new clients. It’s imperative that your contracts be legal and binding to protect yourself and your business. In addition, you may have situations where you’re presented with a contract that you need to review. Having an attorney look over the contract can help protect you from potentially missing something in the fine print that could hurt your business later on.
Pursue Unpaid Invoices
Unless you’re one in a million, almost all freelancers struggle with getting all of their clients to issue payments on time. Some may only be a few days behind, while others may be months in arrears. Getting paid if you’re a freelancer is a huge deal as you don’t have a guaranteed income like an employee working for someone else.
Need Someone to Represent You
While you hope it never happens, you may find yourself being sued one day by a client or other business contact. Don’t attempt to handle it on your own thinking you can save money by not hiring an attorney. Failing to protect yourself could bankrupt your business.
Set Up Your Business Structure
Perhaps you’re tired of being a sole practitioner and you want to look at other options that provide some liability protection and help you be taken more seriously by new clients. An attorney can help you set up an LLC or corporation, for example, that will give you that added layer of protection and professionalism.
Intellectual Property Disputes
What if someone steals your logo or infringes on your copyright? Did you take photos for a client and another company stole the images and used them in their own marketing campaign? Copyright theft happens very often, and in a variety of different industries. Protecting your intellectual property is important, especially if you are a small business.
When Does it Not Make Sense to Hire an Attorney?
There will be times when it doesn’t necessarily make sense to hire an attorney. However, you shouldn’t necessarily make that decision until you’ve met with someone first who can advise you what the best legal course of action is.
For example, if you are only missing a small amount in unpaid invoices, it may be better suited for a small claims action, otherwise you may spend more in legal fees than the amount you are owed. A good Washington DC small business attorney will tell you if your situation is one where you will spend more in legal fees than a case is worth.
If you have questions and/or need assistance for your small business, contact the team at Tobin, O’Connor & Ewing today to schedule an initial consultation.