How to know what contracts your business will need

Business contracts you'll need

Sep 8, 2016

If you’re operating your own business, or are a partner in a business, you will need contracts to protect both you and the business. Below are a summary of some of the common types of legal contracts that a business needs. All of these contracts should be reviewed by a business lawyer with experience in contracts and, specifically, commercial contracts.

Partnership Agreement

Even if your business partner is someone you know well or are related to, a partnership agreement will be helpful to clearly define roles within the business, determine how the partnership deals with disputes and protect the business and individual partners.

A business lawyer can help you draft a partnership agreement that states who is contributing what to the business, how profits are handled, how decisions are made and what the business does if one partner wants to retire or otherwise leave the business.

A lawyer experienced in drafting commercial contracts can help determine what types of clauses you need in the agreement that suit your business. For example, you might want a non-compete clause if one of the partners leaves the business.

Confidentiality Agreement

A confidentiality agreement helps protect your business’ proprietary information. A business lawyer can help you draft a comprehensive confidentiality agreement for your employees, partners, contractors and anyone else with whom you share proprietary information. This agreement will protect information like your business plan, financial numbers, client list, website coding and more.

This agreement will give you peace of mind when sharing sensitive information. A contract lawyer can help ensure that it is legally binding in case confidentiality is broken and you need to seek compensation.

Lease Agreement

If your business is operating out of premise that is leased or rented, rather than owned, a lease agreement is a very important contract. It should be noted that even if one of the partners owns the premise and is leasing it to the business, a lease agreement may still be a helpful document to have in situations of legal disputes.

Businesses are typically dependent on a physical location in one way or another. It may be where your employees work or where you sell your product or where you keep the computers and servers that provide digital services. It may be all of these things and more. If you were to lose this physical premise suddenly or prematurely, it could do irreparable harm to your business. A lawyer can help you ensure that your lease is fair and includes important clauses like notice periods and who handles repairs to the premises.

It is important for a lawyer experienced in business law, commercial contracts and employment contracts to both review your contracts and to keep a copy for themselves. This way they can ensure your contracts are legally-binding and always on hand for reference.

If you’re operating a business and seeking legal assistance and advice as to the contracts your business will need, the business law team at Chown Cairns can help keep your business running smoothly. Learn more about the St. Catharines business lawyers of Chown Cairns.