• Partnership Disputes

    Partnership Disputes

    We have resolved hundreds of disputes between business partners and understand they are not easy.

    That’s why you need to engage a specialist in resolving these types of disputes.

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  • Trade Disputes

    Trade Disputes

    When it comes to business disputes, we have seen them all.

    We are experts at enforcing agreements and intellectual property rights to protect your business.

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  • Employee Disputes

    Employee Disputes

    We are all too aware of the damage an employee can do if they defect to a competitor with confidential information.

    We specialise in resolving disputes of this nature.

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  • Debt Recovery

    Debt Recovery

    Getting paid on time and in full is so important for every business.

    Our track record proves we know what we are doing.

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  • Business Transactions

    Business Transactions

    We are first and foremost business lawyers for business owners.

    We will give you the tools you need to take advantage of commercial opportunities whilst ensuring minimal risk.

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Business Health Check

Business is about maximising opportunities and controlling risk.

While entrepreneurs often focus on opportunities and mature businesses focus on controlling risk, the two issues are inseparable.

Whether informally or formally, all business owners have a strategy to get the most out of their business and avoid risks. We recommend all business owners take the time to set out that strategy in writing and review it regularly.

This article expands of our video on “business health checks” where we explain how we can assist business owners get more out of their businesses. Below are some tips on the kind of legal risks that should be considered as part of an overall business strategy.

Terms and conditions

The relationship with customers is perhaps the key opportunity and key risk of any business. The process of finding and assessing appropriate customers as well as the terms and conditions of supply are critical.

Businesses should carefully consider who they are selling to, if they will be paid on time and if the margin is appropriate. The terms and conditions of supply should always be in writing and include terms regarding price, payment, default, warranties, cancellation, limitation of liability, recovery costs and legal compliance.

Business structure

However your business is structured, (company, trust, partnership etc), you should have an agreement in place that regulates the relationship between the owners. For example, a company with multiple shareholders should have a written shareholder agreement which includes clauses relating to how decisions are made, how profits are distributed, how a shareholder may be replaced, how shares should be valued and how any deadlock may be resolved.

Having a written agreement gives the owners alignment and clarity around their role, obligations and entitlements and make it easier to raise capital. In the event of a dispute, the agreement will also provide a roadmap to resolution.

Employment agreements

A key risk of any business is its relationship with its people. The recent media coverage shows the serious consequences of breaking the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth). But even beyond pay and entitlements, owners should consider how important information such as customer or product information are protected. Similarly, the employment contract should prevent employees from taking customers with them when they leave the business.

Intellectual property

Often the most valuable asset of a business is its brand. However, many businesses have not registered that brand via a trademark. Registering a business name with ASIC does not stop your competitors from using the same or a similar name. A registered trademark does.

Conclusion

Taurus Legal Management are specialists in business risk assessments. Please do not hesitate to contact any member of the Taurus Legal Management team on (03) 9481 2000 or info@tauruslawyers.com.au.

Posted by Taurus Legal Management

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