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Key Questions For Business Startups

There’s a lot to consider when starting a business from scratch…

…and we are often asked to provide people with information about their obligations and rights in setting up a new venture. This can be tricky – every entity will have different objectives and different sectors have differing constraints and parameters. There are some basic considerations that will apply to most businesses though:

  1. Have you recently left another business or are you currently working in another business? There may be restrictions on you setting up your new business (for example in an employment contract or termination agreement).
  2. Have you spoken to an accountant? They will be able to offer advice on taxation issues and what business models may work best from a tax point of view.
  3. Have you considered how the new business will be financed? Is bank lending anticipated and/or is funding coming elsewhere?
  4. Have you considered how the business is going to be set-up? Even before speaking with your accountant you may have some idea about the way the business will be set-up. Different options include a company (limited by shares or guarantee), a sole-trader or a partnership (or limited liability partnership).
  5. Do you know who you are hoping to go into business with (if anyone)? Have you discussed how the business will operate and how your relationship will work? Have any heads of terms been agreed?
  6. Where will the business operate from and on what terms will the property be occupied? For example will it be purchased or leased?
  7. What employees will the business need and what terms will they be engaged upon?
  8. 8.Have insurances been considered? An insurance advisor should be spoken with as necessary.
  9. Who are the suppliers to the business and what are their terms of supply?
  10. Are goods/services to be supplied on a business to business or business to consumer basis (or a mix)? Will standard terms and conditions be required or will bespoke supply agreements be used?
  11. Are you planning to trade over the internet? If so, consideration should be given to the terms of use of the website. There may also be distance selling/data protection issues to consider.
  12. Have any regulatory/governing bodies been approached to obtain any consents/licences required?

If you would like advice in connection with the legal implications of starting a new business, we have experts in property, commercial, employment and corporate law who will be able to assist you as required and where relevant.