For most people, talking to an attorney usually means that someone is in trouble. And if you’re the one who’s calling an attorney, chances are the person in trouble is you or someone you know.
Attorneys are usually best-known as a last resort for helping people stay out of trouble. But attorneys also provide other value-added services to both individuals and businesses.
Maybe attorneys have gotten a bad reputation because of the way society portrays them in the media. After all, attorneys aren’t exactly painted in the most flattering light. We’ve all read about the high-profile cases and the huge million-dollar settlements. We’ve all seen the attorneys portrayed on television as being greedy, indifferent, and overly-concerned with their fees. In fact shows like Boston Legal not only entertain viewers with the antics of their behavior but win awards for doing it! And, of course, we’ve all heard the lawyer jokes.
But despite what you’ve heard or read, or what your personal feelings about attorneys might be, attorneys do provide a valuable and much-needed service in a number of different areas. In addition to their main duties of upholding the law and protecting client’s rights, here are just a few other areas in which attorneys add value to businesses.
- They help resolve legal disputes
- They help prevent legal problems or limit their consequences
- They provide legal representation if you’re arrested for a crime
- They can handle the legal aspects of starting a business and forming a partnership or corporation
- They can provide counsel on local, state and federal tax matters
- They represent your interests in a lawsuit
- They provide legal counsel when filing for bankruptcy
- They can protect you against claims from customers or other businesses
- They can identify business risks you may not be aware of
- They can help you stay in compliance with rules and regulations in your business or industry
- They can defend you in court
- They can handle negotiations on your behalf
- They can assist with general corporate matters
- They can assist with mergers and acquisitions
- They can advise on intellectual property matters such as copyrights, patents and trademarks
- They can handle matters of Labor and Employment law, workplace safety issues, unions, and government compliance
Now, a lot of these areas of law may not seem very exciting or glamorous. And chances are most wouldn’t make very riveting prime time viewing. But if you’re the one who has the problem, it’s nice to know that there’s a knowledgeable expert available who can help you solve it, and they’re just a phone call away.