It doesn’t matter if you have been running a business for years or are about to start one – it is essential to get some legal protection for it.
A non-disclosure agreement will protect your ideas, financial information, copyrights, patents and software. This will help to keep your business safe against other businesses that try to encroach or replicate your work. Non-disclosure agreements are particularly useful when having initial conversations with manufacturers or collaborators and when disclosing commercially sensitive information to people whether they work inside or outside of your company.
A shareholders agreement must be set up if you are setting up a limited company with others. This regulates and outlines arrangements between you and your fellow shareholders. A well drafted shareholders agreement will set out out how the company will be managed, any directions as to dividend policy, how to deal with the exit of a shareholder and how to deal with a future sale of the business.
A shareholders agreement is also necessary if you are looking to secure investment from a person or company in exchange for a shareholding. The agreement should also address what will happen to the investor’s shares if more money is invested – will their shares be diluted?
"The best time to address legal business protection is during the start-up phase of a business or new project", says Commercial Solicitor Matthew Fretten. This is the point where people are generally more able to reach agreement on controversial issues as they usually feel they have less to lose. But it’s never too late to enter into business protection contracts and in every instance these contracts will put your business into a more secure and predictable position than before. If you would like any further information on business agreements our Commercial team will be happy to chat to you.
Our Commercial team based in Christchurch also cover Bournemouth, Poole and the New Forest. For a free initial chat, please call 01202 499255 and Matthew or a member of the team will be happy to discuss any questions that you may have.