Benefits of Your Company Having Its Own General Counsel or Fractured General Counsel
Many entrepreneurs consult a Broward County, Coral Springs or Parkland business law attorney when they decide to start a business. They need legal advice regarding issues related to business entity formation, taxation, employment matters, licenses, permits, and regulations. However, most business owners do not retain a full-time in-house general counsel. They only contact a business law attorney in Florida when they have a legal problem.
However, hiring an in-house attorney or using a fractured general counsel has several benefits for a company. Below we discuss the difference between in-house general counsels and fractured general counsels. We also discuss how having an attorney involved in your day-to-day operations can reduce your risk of liability and future legal problems.
In-House General Counsel vs. Fractured General Counsel
Many large corporations who routinely needed legal advice regarding a variety of business issues find that hiring a full-time attorney is more cost-effective and practical than hiring a law firm whenever they needed legal services. An in-house general counsel is an attorney who is an employee of the company. The attorney works solely for the company instead of having other clients.
An in-house general counsel benefits the company in a variety of ways, including but not limited to:
- Provides more meaningful legal advice and counsel because the attorney is an integral part of the team with a deep understanding of the business.
- Proactive solutions to problems. Instead of hiring an attorney when a legal problem arises, an in-house counsel works to avoid legal issues. In-house general counsel may implement dispute resolution problems, draft legal documents, develop records management programs, and ensure compliance with industry standards, in addition to providing legal support.
- In-house counsel hires, manages, and coordinates with outside counsel on legal matters that require additional legal support.
- Since in-house general counsel is an employee, legal fees are managed more effectively as a set overhead cost instead of a variable cost.
Unfortunately, in-house general counsel may be too costly for many small businesses and startups. However, a fractured general counsel can offer the same benefits at a fraction of the cost.
A fractional general counsel is an attorney who works part-time for several companies. The attorney provides the same services as in-house general counsel. However, since the attorney is not a full-time employee, the company does not have the high cost of a salary and the cost of employee benefits and overhead.
Many fractional general counsels offer flexible plans for clients. You can hire the attorney for a set number of hours each week/month or a certain number of days each week/month. Some law firms and attorneys offer other plans that can be tailored to the specific needs of the company.
Even though the fractional general counsel works part-time for the company, the attorney gains a deep understanding of the business and the employees. The attorney becomes a key member of the team, just as an in-house general counsel does after being hired.
Working with a Florida Business Attorney
If you are not ready to retain an in-house attorney or fractional attorney, your company can benefit from developing a relationship with a business law attorney. A business law attorney can offer key advice and guidance on a variety of issues, including day-to-day operations.
If you have not consulted an attorney since you formed your business, it might be a good time to check in with a business law attorney to ensure that you are doing everything you need to protect yourself and your company regarding various legal matters.
Matthew Fornaro provides comprehensive business law services in Coral Springs and throughout Broward County. He is an experienced and skilled business law attorney who can help you with all your business law matters.
To request a consultation, call 954-324-3651 or contact us online.