Business Law 101: Top 10 Contract Tips Every Business Owner Should Know (Part 2)

http://smallbiztrends.com/2011/03/small-business-news-lessons-in-entrepreneurship.html (last accessed September 22, 2011)

The Story

This is a continuation of Part 1 from last week’s blog found here: http://wp.me/p1JRPo-11. If you already know the background information, please skip to the “My Perspective” Section.

Small Business News posted an article that gives a set of instructions or “things to know” for those that are interested in entrepreneurship. These include (1) Strategy, (2) Marketing, (3) Taxes, (4) Finance, (5) Self Development, (6) Start Ups, (7) Profitability and (8) Policy. While its true that an enterpreneur should know a little about all of these areas, none of this matters if you don’t know BUSINESS LAW 101. This is critical area and it’s unfortunate that it was missing from the list. I would hate to see an entrepreneur become truly SUCCESSFUL and then LOSE it all because they didn’t know the business legal basics.

In this blog, I will give you the last five (5) business contract tips every business owner should know. These tips are helpful whether you live outside of Georgia or in KLP’s exclusive jurisdiction of Georgia. It’s important to KLP as a law firm to use its knowledge and resources to benefit small business owners and keep them out of harm’s way. Kendrick Law Practice is here to keep Georgia business owners “IN business and OUT of Court” through document drafting, document reviewing and negotiating services as well as business consulting and advice. Visit us online at www.kendricklaw.net to learn more about how we combine comprehensive business and legal services to add value to our clients.

My Perspective: Top 10 Business Tips, Part 2

6. Make sure the other side has authority to bind. Nothing is more devestating than to go through the motions of securing an agreement with “the other party” only to find that the person signing the document had NO AUTHORITY to bind the company. Protect yourself by requesting meeting minutes specifically authorizing a particular person to enter into a business transaction with you, pull the Secretary of State records to make sure the person is a principal or, as a last resort, ask for something from the President or Board in writing giving authority to either a person (safer) or a position (not as safe but easier since people change positions).
7.Make sure your attorney understands the UCC Article 2 and can explain to you. The Uniform Commercial Code is the Law of Commercial Conduct and Article 2 deals specifically with the “sale of goods” (not services.) If you sell goods, make sure you have a business attorney that understands the U.C.C. because there are provisions in there that are SPECIFIC and UNIQUE only to “merchants”, i.e. businesses.
8.Read! Read! Read! NOTE: Saying “I didn’t read that” is not a legal excuse. It makes you look like  a bad business owner and will not suffice in Court. Read everything and ask your legal counsel questions.
9.Ask Questions! Ask Questions! Ask Questions! Your attorney should be able to provide answers to all your questions or know how to find out. While you are not an attorney, you can still be VERY involved in the decision making and legal analysis process.
10.Under GA law, businesses MUST be represented by Counsel. The case law in Georgia says “corporations” but it is safe to say that businesses shouldn’t take a chance of their documents and responses being thrown out of Court because they didn’t retain Counsel.  Do so today!
Conclusions
All of the items listed by this article are crucial skills and tasks every entrepreneur must juggle and think about. However, if you make LOADS of money and are HIGHLY successful, it can be taken all away because you don’t have the basic legal knowledge to protect yourself. KLP is here to help and we are standing by.
Discussion Question: What Other Contract Tips Would You Offer Business Owners?
Why Kendrick Law Practice?
  1. We offer comprehensive legal AND business advice and consulting, creating value for
    your company’s investment in us.
    KLP’s Founder, Dar’shun Kendrick, holds a law degree and Master’s in Business
    Administration.
  2. We offer a three (3) point guarantee:
      1. “24 hour guarantee”-
        You will receive a phone call from an attorney within 24 business hours of
        submission your information through our
        website;
      2. “72 hour guarantee”- You will receive your
        document drafted or reviewed within 72 business hours after payment (or it’s
        FREE!) and
      3. “Dispute guarantee”-
        KLP will negotiate the terms of any document that we drafted or reviewed FOR
        FREE should a dispute arise (*Does NOT include litigation
        costs.).
  3. We provide access to a number of opportunities and resources.
    For example…
    1. Monthly e-newsletter: Sign up by visiting
      www.kendricklaw.net;
    2. Facebook: www.facebook.com/kendricklawpractice;
    3. Twitter: www.twitter.com/kendricklaw
    4. LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/darshunkendrick
    5. Weekly Blog Discussions: www.kendricklaw.wordpress.com
    6. Partnerships: www.kendricklaw.net/partnerships;
    7. Weekly Consultations: www.kendricklaw.net/consultations; and
    8. Blogtalkradio: www.blogtalkradio.com/kendricklaw
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1 Comment

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One response to “Business Law 101: Top 10 Contract Tips Every Business Owner Should Know (Part 2)

  1. Great Information I love it!!!

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