Times are tough, especially for entrepreneurs. In order to succeed in the business world, you need “grit” as the Americans say. In addition, to you need access to markets and access to funding.
The problem with accessing sustainable markets, is that it often is a David versus Goliath situation. As a result, long and complex contracts or requirements are set. What is more, because most smaller businesses are more concerned about making sales or simply making ends meet, getting to the legal side of things – well that simply does not happen. This leads to businesses being non-complaint and thus viewed as a risk – as a result cannot access funding.
In reality, small businesses that see legal compliance as a priority are often not in the position to hire attorneys. As a result, their options are:
1. Purchase a template from a news agency
Although very cost effective, the problem with this is that templates are often outdated and the instructions on completion are unclear. If outdated and incorrectly compiled, businesses are, in my view, simply better off without.
Many businesses do not buy templates but actually download it from the internet. The problem with this is that the sources of these are often unclear – so in reality, you really don’t know what you are getting.
2. Subscribe to legal insurance or legal consultancy
Subscriptions for in case you require legal representation are usually insurance policies. The problem herewith is that often some disputes are excluded, or some advisory needs are not included. Resulting in the business being left without access to these services, in some cases when they need it the most.
In terms of consultancies, these are businesses that are not law firms. In many instances, their service delivery and prices are much more competitive than law firms are. However, should a client be dissatisfied, they have limited recourse. All professionals belong to professional bodies that set and enforce standards. So, contracting with a consultant bears the risk of no specific quality standard guarantee and, in case of dissatisfaction, recourse lies in ombud structures or courts and often cost money.
3. A different way of thinking
It seems that small businesses are really left out in the dark. However, technology and developments in the legal industry may hold the answer. A select few consultancies, and now a law firm, have embarked on automating the documentary needs of small businesses and start-ups. SchoemanLaw Inc. in Cape Town is one of those firms. In essence, this development is addressing a challenge faced by every other purported solution to date. Some benefits of this mind shift include:
- Users have access to up to date documents;
- It’s instantly accessible and the source is clear;
- Some systems include sophisticated help functions so as to ensure correct completion and implementation;
- The prices cannot complete with the traditional way of obtaining legal advice;
- Those supported by a law firm, are guaranteed the standards and quality associated with a law firm;
- Advisory support is often included or can be accessed additionally.
In addition, relying on more efficient ways of accessing these crucial services also standardises, manages and organises the legal and contractual needs of any businesses. Something that will serve them well whenever they wish to pitch to that large company for that contract that will really change things or access to funding when needing to expand.
 For more information: https://www.schoemanlaw.co.za/online-legal-services/