Many business owners think that a lawyer is only needed if the business gets sued. This couldn’t be further from reality. So, why should a small business hire a lawyer to be available on hand? The answer is simple: the confidence, peace of mind, and security you get from having counsel anytime your business needs it.
Like having a CPA or an insurance broker, you and your lawyer should gel to work cohesively together for the betterment of the business. Do you really want to waste hours negotiating with several different attorneys to try to find the right one when you have a legal issue on your hands? Probably not.
Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of having a lawyer on hand and who you can reach out to for more information.
What Is an Attorney on Call?
There are several fee arrangements by which an attorney can work. One popular arrangement is a contingency fee, which means the attorney’s fee is contingent on the outcome of the matter. Another fee arrangement might be to work off a retainer. Having a lawyer on retainer is similar to an attorney on call, however, retained counsel asks its clients to pay a lump sum amount to be held in trust and the attorney works against those funds. When working with an attorney on call, you only pay for earned services.
The idea of an on-call attorney is the same as utilizing an attorney as your fractional general counsel. Similar to the concept of hiring someone on a part-time or contract basis, a fractional attorney often divides their time between multiple clients to be a cost-effective solution for business legal issues.
Having an attorney on call comes in handy, especially if someone sues your business. In the event you do have any legal troubles, you won’t have to sift through different attorneys to find the right fit.
Instead, you will already have a lawyer ready to go to battle on your behalf. All you will have to do is call them up and explain the matter at hand.
Why Should My Business Hire a Lawyer to Always be On-Call?
Legal, HR, and compliance issues can pop up at any time for a company. When they do, the convenience of being able to immediately call a trusted advisor is the number one reason you should hire an on-call lawyer.
Establishing that relationship before any legal emergency is key to the success of your partnership with your lawyer. Most business owners do not have time to teach themselves how to act as their own legal counsel and hiring a law firm on an ad hoc basis can quickly become cost-prohibitive.
Your attorney has the necessary experience and licensing to handle the legal issues that come up for your business. You will have a trusted legal advisor on your side to educate and guide you through the legal process.
Finding an attorney can be a grueling task, especially when you are already overwhelmed with some legal matter on your hand. Some attorneys are more competent than others, especially when it comes to handling certain legal issues in your specific industry or the nuances of your particular business.
What Can a Business Lawyer Do for Your Business
Business lawyers deal in issues specific to the business environment. Contracts, entity formation, compliance, human resources, and collections are some of the areas that a business lawyer deals with regularly.
Every day, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of legal functions that occur within a business. Whether or not you realize it, legal oversight (or the lack thereof) has a tremendous impact on the efficiency of your day-to-day business operations. The role of a business lawyer is to assist in the intricacies of those operations to avoid costly legal landmines.
What is FGC?
Fractional General Counsel, also known as FGC, is an attorney that provides you and your business with ongoing legal services at a flat rate or a fixed-priced structure. An FGC and their law firm have many other clients they serve, but your company receives a specific number of hours each month.
You can access your attorney for general legal advice or a legal emergency for a set fee. If you need any additional services beyond your set number of hours each month, you will pay an agreed-upon hourly rate for certain services.
Benefits of a Fractional General Counsel
One of the most significant benefits of fractional general counsel is budgeting. As mentioned earlier, when you have an attorney who is always available, you can work out a budget for your attorney’s services. FGCs typically work on a set-fee basis. This means that, barring any unexpected legal issues, you will no longer have any surprise legal bills.
Connects You to the Right People
Although your attorney has a plethora of legal information, they aren’t superhuman. An excellent attorney will know and understand their own personal scope and will reach out to others if a situation is outside of their realm of expertise.
What your fractional general counsel will do is refer you to other experts who can best help you. For example, if you face a litigation issue or a tax issue and they don’t practice that area of law, they can provide you with a resource who can.
They may even know the perfect CPA to handle your books if you have any tax issues. Your on-hand attorney is more than just a legal shield over your business; they are also an integral member of your team who can take your business to the next level.
Cost for Fractional General Counsel
A fee for fractional general counsel depends on the attorney and their own schedule of fees.
Some attorneys base their on-demand fees on their hourly rate, estimating the number of hours they believe your case may need. Some attorneys are willing to negotiate their prices with you, especially if you intend to hire them as fractional general counsel.
Hire a Reputable Lawyer
Why should my business hire a lawyer to be available on hand? It is better to be proactive instead of reactive. No matter how big or small your business is, you can benefit from knowing that you have a capable attorney on your side if something comes up.
If you are ready to hire an attorney on hand or if you have questions about having a reputable attorney on your side, contact us now. Here at Martino Law Firm, we can help ensure that you stay in compliance, and we can help protect your business from any losses.