Having your own business can be a rewarding and profitable experience, but it can also bring about litigation, which occurs more and more often. To protect yourself and your business, it is important to set yourself up for success and cover all your bases as far as keeping customers satisfied and your employees happy.
Implementing a few good habits, such as purchasing liability insurance and choosing the right legal entity for your business type, can help keep your personal affairs separate from the company and ensure that you stay in business for many years to come.
Maintain company policies
If you have employees, it is vital that you have policies and safety procedures setup and that you reinforce them, to avoid any potential employee lawsuit. Your workers should know how to do their jobs in the best possible way, but also with safety in mind. It is one thing for a worker to get hurt during an accident and file a workers’ compensation claim, but it becomes an entirely different matter if she or he sustains permanent disabilities because of a lapse in your safety equipment and decides to sue you.
No matter how small your business may be, writing out carefully drafted contracts is a good habit to get into. Record times and dates of when you sign documents, and keep track of any additional agreements during a project that change the outcome or pricing. Having a signature for everything, even if it is a business agreement between close friends, will save you in the long run. It only takes one misunderstanding to cause trouble for your company.
Provide excellent customer service
Showing a willingness to put in the extra effort to solve your customer’s problems ensures they stay happy and continue doing business with you. This also protects you and your reputation from bad reviews and potential legal action.
Hire an experienced attorney
Find an attorney who understands business law and the necessary protections, insurance and paperwork you should have for your industry. Having an attorney lined up early on can save you precious time in the event of a time-sensitive dispute.