Launching a startup is not a decision to be taken lightly. It may be all that you’ve ever dreamed of, but jumping in headfirst is not the way to go about things. Success has to be earned, and without solid foundations to build your business on, it will forever elude you.

That’s why it’s so important to do your homework before you take the leap. You need to research your target audience, brush up on your marketing skills, learn to identify prime locations and, most importantly of all, spend some time studying the laws that will govern your SME.

You see, although there is a popular misconception that all is fair in love, war, and business, the latter is strictly untrue, and you need to know how to comply with the relevant statutes before you can found a venture that’s built to last. So, to get you started, here are three top tips to help you…

#1: Do your homework

The law regarding business and commercial transactions is governed by a number of different statutes. Six of these stand above every other in terms of their relevance, applicability, and status, and these are the ones that you need to be most familiar with.

Governing everything from online selling rules to the quality of the goods you offer, they are the Consumer Rights Act, Consumer Credit Act, Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract Regulations, E-Commerce Regulations, Distance Selling Regulations, and Electronic Signatures Regulations. Get to grips with these, and you’ll be able to lay the perfect groundwork for a successful SME.

#2: Understand your financial obligations

The laws that we mentioned above all deal with your relationships with your customers, but they are not the only ones that you will have an obligation to abide by.

You’ll also be obliged to pay taxes and duties on the goods and services you provide, and in order to ensure that you’re fully legally compliant with regards to your finances, it’s important to familiarise yourself with how the system works.

If you feel like you’re not personally equipped to do so, then hire a well recommended accountant, and hand the burden of checking the books over to them.

#3: Don’t try to handle legal disputes alone

In the worst case scenario, potential disputes have the ability to snowball into fully fledged litigation, and where this is the case, you don’t want to find yourself standing alone in the courtroom.

Instead, you need an experienced professional on your side and fighting your corner. To find the best of these, it’s important to do your research, and this should really start before any claims are ever raised.

Having a company like Withers Worldwide on speed dial can make all the difference when it comes to successfully addressing an issue, so start preparing yourself now.

Build solid foundations for your startup by ensuring that it’s legally compliant from the word go.

Contributor: Kate Knight is a freelance writer and takes great interest in all things business and law. Her particular interests lie in business compliance and the online market place.

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