1. Find good attorneys for other fields of practice
You lawyer certainly isn’t skilled in all types of law. A good commercial lawyer cannot be very experienced in family law, as well, and the other way around.
But even if he cannot handle all your legal problems himself, he might know somebody who can. Lawyers recommend each other all the time and with great results. It might be a former colleague, a collaborator or even a friend from law school.
Either way, there’s a big chance that your lawyer has multiple connections in the legal business and can refer you to somebody good for the job.
2. Recover debt
Ok, your lawyer is certainly not going to go banging on someone’s door, asking for your money back.
But a well-written payment notice signed by a lawyer can do wonders when people just ‘forget’ to return a loan and refuse to pay you for a service you already provided. It is also a cheaper and faster alternative to settle your differences, instead of going straight to court.
3. Offer business advice
A business lawyer usually deals with multiple types of clients and their businesses – with all their good parts and their bad parts, somehow like an auditor. And knowing a business to the core like that can offer you great perspective.
If you have challenges with things like cash flow, logistics or billing, you can try asking your lawyer about his view on things. He might know how other professionals had addressed that kind of problem in the past or the solution might be buried down in the legal undergrounds of your business. Maybe you should redo parts of your contracts or change the company structure, who knows?
So do not hesitate and reach out to your attorney for help. You might be surprised by the results.
4. Handle negotiations for you
As an entrepreneur, you might be used to handling all the important work yourself. This includes calling the shots when it comes to discussing commercial agreements and striking deals with clients and collaborators.
But these tasks can be quite stressful and, as a business owner, you might become overwhelmed by business such communication. That’s why you can let your lawyer do the talking, while you take care of the most important thing – decision making. If you let your lawyer be your voice and handle the commercial negotiations, you can keep calmer in key moments and therefore get better deals. Which is what we all want, right?
5. Offer input on tax matters
Normally, your bookkeeping and tax issues are handled by your accountant. But like no lawyers are same, not all accountants are the same or equally good. That’s why if you have any doubts about your accountant’s work or there are any red flags, such as strange letters from the tax authorities that the accountant will ‘take care of’, or constant errors in his work, you can discuss these delicate matters with your lawyer.
Although he is not a bookkeeper, he usually has some financial education and can also understand the ‘legalese’ in which letters from authorities are written. As your attorney, he can even discuss with your accountant to find out if there are any financial issues that you should worry about. And, in the worst-case scenario, your lawyer might even recommend you another professional for a second opinion on your company books.
Also, let’s not forget – tax law, in the end, is still law. And your lawyer thrives in this field.
6. Represent you in relation with public authorities
Public authorities are not known to be the most transparent and forward-thinking institutions. Their staff is sometimes overworked, and they don’t have the necessary incentives to offer good client communication and provide you with all needed information in due time.
If you have a private business, then you are motivated to offer the best client service, in order to keep your clients, right? But when it comes to public institutions, they have no competition. You cannot just leave them if you are not satisfied and jump to the next service provider.
That’s why a lawyer can be very helpful when things get stuck in communication with public institutions. A formal request from a lawyer will usually be taken more seriously and be handled more quickly. Not to mention that lawyers can be more pushy (it’s in our nature, I guess) and are also better at understanding the formal language of institutions, who usually is legalese instead of simple, straight forward language.
7. Find good professionals for your project
You might need a good accountant, cadastral worker, architect, financial consultant, real estate agent or notary public for your ongoing project. And goof professionals are hard to come by. So next time instead of checking the internet or asking friends around for recommendations, try going to your lawyer first.
Your lawyer might be skilled at a lot of tasks, but he cannot do everything. For example, he might be great at taking care of the paperwork for a real estate transaction, but he cannot find a property for you or legalize the transaction papers. He could, however, recommend a good person for this job. Chances are he has worked with such professionals in the past for other clients and has some contacts in that specific field of work.
And when it comes to your business matters, it is certainly safer to go by recommendation than rely on a Google search to find the right person for the job.