I recently spoke at the AICD regional conference about surviving in business. To assist attendees I created a 20 point legal business health check so that people can conduct a quick review of their business.
How do you score on the Legal Business Health Check?
- Is your business owned in your own name, or in an entity that owns other assets?
- Have you signed any personal guarantees in relation to your business?
- Are your spouse’s assets protected if your business fails?
- If you are in business with other parties, do you have a properly documented agreement with the other owners of your business?
- Do you have appropriate insurances in place, such as WorkCover, professional indemnity and public liability?
- What happens if one of the owners or key people in your business die? Will the business survive?
- Do you have properly documented terms of trade with all parties that you deal with in your business?
- Do you know the terms of the lease of your business premises?
- What happens on the expiration of the lease in your business? Will your rent increase?
- Do you have properly documented employment agreements and contracts with your employees, and contractors that you deal with?
- Is your business logo and other intellectual property trademarked and protected?
- Do you have systems and procedures in place to comply with your occupational, health and safety obligations?
- Have you accounted for, or paid up to date, all of your superannuation, PAYG, GST and tax obligations?
- Do you have appropriate corporate governance in place, such as minutes of meetings, policies, constitution, and shareholders’ agreements?
- If there are any loans that have been made by you to your business, are they properly documented and secured?
- Do you have terms of trade for your website?
- Have you protected your interests in the event you are not paid by your customers?
- Do you have any risk management strategies to protect your business in the event of unforeseeable events, such as data crashes etc?
- Does your business comply with all consumer protection laws?
If you have any questions in relation to your business, your legal business health check or anything referred to above, please contact me.