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Early-stage advice on legal structures is key to start-up success

18 Feb 2020 / law society Print

Early-stage legal advice is key to start-up success

The Law Society is encouraging entrepreneurs and start-ups across Ireland to make sure they get the right advice from the beginning to help plan for short and long-term success.

And one of the most important decisions to make when starting a business is which type of legal structure to use.

The decisions made at the very start of the life of a business can impact every aspect of its future.

“We cannot stress enough the importance of getting the right advice at an early stage,” said Teri Kelly, Law Society Director of Representation and Member Services.

Structures

“Different structures suit different types of businesses. A small business can choose to be structured as a sole trader, for example,” Teri Kelly pointed out.

A sole trader business is an uncomplicated structure where the liability of the business is attached to one person.

The benefits include less paperwork and less regulatory compliance.

The trade-off is an increased personal liability for claims or debts.

“To get this and all the other critical elements right, we always recommend seeking the expert advice of your local solicitor,” said Teri Kelly.

Legal expert

“It’s important to remember that the small law firm or sole practitioner down the street from you is a small business owner as well as a legal expert.

“They are rooted in the local business community, as well as being uniquely plugged in to a local, national and international network of fellow, highly-qualified legal experts. No start-up challenge is too big or too small for your local solicitor.” 

Solicitors can also advise across all other areas of the business, including tax, employment, GDPR and more.

Start-up business

“It’s also worth remembering that your local solicitor’s firm was once a start-up business itself,” Teri Kelly added.

In 2019, the Law Society launched a strategic plan to support and develop the more than 2,000 firms in Ireland that have five or fewer solicitors.

More information on this initiative is available on the Law Society website.

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