Going Into Business After College: Do You Need a Lawyer?

by A Guest Author

Life for college students who are planning to enter the world of business can be stressful. Between studying, taking classes, trying to find your way and determining your business future, the process can ultimately find even the most accomplished business students asking questions. However, one question that needs to be addressed among virtually every business student is, "Do I need a lawyer?" The reasons for partnering with a lawyer as a college student seeking to go into business are multiple and varied, but here are some of the most common:

1) Intellectual Property Protection

One of the most common reasons for partnering with a lawyer as a business student is to protect intellectual property. Since the Internet has become a larger piece of virtually every business and business decision made today, it is more important than ever for college students entering the business world to seek out the services of an attorney. Experienced lawyers will be able to give competent and qualified legal representation and advice regarding the protection of ideas and innovation. An attorney can not only assist business graduates with patenting, trademarking and copyrighting ideas, and intellectual property, but they can also help such graduates with representation in court should the occasion arise.

2) Business and Individual Taxes

Recent graduates should also find a qualified attorney to help them work through the various tax issues that may occur when starting a business or becoming involved in the business industry. These legal professionals can offer guidance regarding the amount of capital that business owners and executives need to pay in order to remain within the parameters of the legal tax code, and they can also offer assistance regarding representation in court if tax issues do arise. Because taxes and tax laws change from year to year, partnering with a tax attorney can be helpful to ensure that you and your business keep up with the latest in legal requirements and benefits.

3) Liability

If you choose to go into business for yourself, realize that you are choosing to take on a certain amount of legal liability for your customers. This liability may be small or great, but regardless, it exists. By partnering with an attorney that specializes in your field of expertise, you can help to minimize the risk that you or your business are taking, and you can also help to ensure that your customers and employees remain protected.

For instance, if you operate a construction company in the state of New York, you would want to seek out the services of a New York construction lawyer. Finding a law firm that has experience working with other businesses like yours will assure you that your legal council understands your specific industry, is knowledgeable regarding the laws in your field, and can advise you as such.

A New York construction attorney for example, can help you and your fledgling construction business recognize the possible liabilities that are pertinent to that unique industry. If you are opening a restaurant or a landscaping company, you might need a lawyer who specializes in setting up a sole proprietorship, or a corporation. Choosing a knowledgeable attorney from the beginning can help you and your business remain safe and profitable for years to come, even if faced with a lawsuit, “whether it is a dispute that requires litigation or one that might be resolved in a non-adversarial process,” notes the firm of Canfield, Madden & Ruggiero.

Willamette College of Law Grad

Finally, you may also wish to retain a personal attorney who works with your business dealings and your personal assets. A personal attorney can allow you to separate your business assets from your personal assets, and this can be very helpful in the event that any of your business dealings become a legal issue. If you wish to seek out these services, spend some time searching online, or ask for a referral from other businesses. Starting a company after college with your degree and the right legal representation can save you time, money and stress during all your long-term business goals.

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cubanrefugee/3564654441/

About The Author

Karla M. Somers is a graduate of community college and a private university. She is a small business owner who likes to help college students achieve success in the “real” world. Karla is a contributing writer for the New York lawyers of Canfield, Madden & Ruggiero, a firm specializing in contractual law for construction companies and small businesses.

This post was written by A Guest Author

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Darci Andrle August 1, 2012 at 4:37 am

You made some clear points there. I looked on the internet for the subject and found most people will go along with with your blog.


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