Starting A Business: The Basics

Posted by Bray Dohrwardt | Feb 05, 2024 | 0 Comments

Starting a business can be an exciting and rewarding experience. However, it is essential to consider the legal aspects of starting a business to ensure that you operate within the laws and regulations that apply to your industry. 

Here are some legal considerations that you should keep in mind when starting a business: 

Business structure: One of the first legal considerations when starting a business is deciding on the business structure. A business structure is the legal classification of a company that determines taxes, liability, and other legal rights and responsibilities. The most common business structures are sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation. Each structure has advantages and disadvantages; you should choose the one that best fits your business needs. It is essential to understand what types of control you want to run your business and the tax obligations associated with each business structure. 

Business name: A business name is an essential legal consideration. You should ensure that the name you choose is not already in use and does not infringe on any trademarks or copyrights. You should also start thinking about a logo for your business. A logo may be crucial to helping drive marketing to your business. If you market your business online, check to ensure you can secure a memorable domain name. 

Licenses and permits: Depending on your industry and location, you may need to obtain licenses and permits to operate your business legally. Check with your local government to determine what licenses and permits you need. 

Tax obligations: As a business owner, you must pay taxes on your income. Before picking a business structure, you should consider the tax obligations associated with your chosen structure. Also, depending on your product offering, you may need to collect state and local sales tax. Always understand your tax obligations and file your taxes on time. 

Contracts and agreements: Contracts and agreements are essential legal documents that can protect your business interests. You should ensure that you have contracts with suppliers, employees, and customers to protect your business interests. 

Intellectual property: Protecting your intellectual property, such as trademarks, copyrights, and patents, is essential to prevent others from using your ideas or products without your permission. This is how you protect your business name and logo.

Employment laws: As an employer, you are responsible for complying with federal and state employment laws, such as minimum wage, overtime pay, and anti-discrimination laws. Also, you will want to be aware of your state's laws regarding non-compete and non-solicit agreements. 

Starting a business is an exciting and challenging journey. Considering these first questions can ensure that your business operates within the laws and regulations that apply to your industry and protects your interests. It is always recommended to consult with legal professionals to ensure you follow all legal requirements. For more information about starting a business, see my business formation page. The Dohrwardt Law Firm can help.

The information provided is only for general information and is not meant to be legal advice.  Information on this website, including third-party links, may not include the most up-to-date information, so you should contact your attorney to discuss your particular matter. Third-party links are provided for convenience only and are not an endorsement by the Dohrwardt Law Firm.

About the Author

Bray Dohrwardt

As an accomplished attorney with over 22 years of experience, Bray Dohrwardt has built an impressive career, enabling business growth and commercial success for many companies from start-ups to large corporations and nonprofits. He focuses his practice on business law and energy law.


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Bray Dohrwardt is licensed to practice law in Minnesota and Texas. Please contact the Dohrwardt Law Firm to discuss how the firm can help you get business done.