Laws Every Small Business Owner Needs to Be Aware Of
You don’t need to go to law school to run a business,but it is a good idea to read up on the laws that are relevant to your industry. For example, if you are a building contractor there will be building and health and safety regulations that you have to adhere to. Get in touch with associations that are related to your area of business to find out about any legislation that pertains to your company. Keep in mind, though, that laws are constantly changing. So keep up to date with the latest rules to ensure your business and employees are operating within them.
It is also a good idea to visit the business development office in your city. They can let you know about any local laws that could affect your business. This is worth doing, whatever your line of business.
Legislation varies from location to location and depends on the industry you work in. However, here is a general guide to some areas of law that nearly every company needs to be aware of.
Laws about Advertising
All of your advertising needs to be honest, and you should be careful not to mislead your customers. Exact legislation varies depending on whether you use ads on the internet, post billboards, or advertise on TV so make sure you have a good understanding of consumer protection and marketing laws. Checking before you launch an ad or a product could save you a lot of embarrassment and even prevent a lawsuit, so be vigilant.
Online Business Legislation
Whether you do all or just some of your business online, it is important that your firm complies with any relevant laws. These include but are not limited to privacy, tax, and copyright laws.
Labor and Employment Laws
If you have employees then it is important to ensure that the contracts you provide them with are legal and that their working conditions are in line with legislation on benefits, health care, pay, health and safety and anything else relevant to their job. Contracts should be easy to understand and properly drafted to ensure clarity and protect both you and your staff.
Foreign Workers and Employee Entitlement
Before you put anyone on your payroll, carry out all the necessary checks and background searches. Ensure that each worker has the relevant paperwork and the right to work in your country. These background checks will ensure the safety of both your customers and your other employees. If you have any doubts, check and double check.
Personal information can be very sensitive. No one wants their private information to get into the wrong hands, and your customers, clients and staff will want to know that any personal information you have of theirs is safe. Familiarizing yourself on the latest privacy laws relevant to your industry will ensure that you handle their information professionally and legally.
To avoid law suits and hefty fines, become familiar with the laws that affect your business. Do your research before making any changes to your company and consult a lawyer to help draft contracts. Stay well informed and attentive. By doing so, you will maintain your company’s reputation and avoid litigation.