Survey Says Small Business Owners Are Optimistic About the Future but There Are Still Concerns – How a Business Law Attorney Can Help Resolve Them

Illinois small business attorneysSmall businesses are the backbone of America's economy, but they are also the most susceptible to failure – and not just because they must compete against corporations and large chain stores. The recession hit everyone hard, but small businesses experienced mass closure and bankruptcy. Those that survived had to weather out the recession and hope that people would start spending money again. Now that it is happening, new and old small business owners say they are optimistic about their future, a recent survey said. However, there are still concerns. Learn what they are, how to mitigate them, and what an experienced business law attorney can help.

Small Businesses and the Nuances of Business Law

Laws change all the time – and that includes laws relating to business. Corporations typically have teams of attorneys to inform them of major changes that could impact their company. The same cannot be said for small business owners. Because of this, smaller businesses tend to be more susceptible to things like lawsuits (sometimes from patrons or consumers, but usually from employees), and they may struggle to ensure that they stay in compliance with some of the more complex employment law matters. In some instances, such as those relating to federal or state taxes, can place not just a business at risk, but also its owner.

Preventing and Fighting Against Lawsuits

Since small businesses are inherently more susceptible to lawsuits, it is critical that they take preventative measures whenever possible. Examples of such measures can include:

  • Hiring an experienced attorney to ensure that the business's employment handbook clearly and concisely outlines the employer's expectations;
  • Ensuring there are clear policies regarding in-office harassment and discrimination;
  • Developing a management training program that refreshes all supervisors on applicable harassment and discrimination;
  • Maintaining an open-door policy; and
  • Handling all reports of harassment and discrimination in a professional and diligent manner.

Sadly, even when taking such measures, small businesses remain at a higher risk of a lawsuit than other businesses. In the event that one is filed against your business, it is crucial that you know where to turn for guidance, assistance, and aggressive representation.

Contact Our DuPage County Business Law Attorneys

At Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC, we understand the challenges that small businesses face because we, too, are a small business. Dedicated to ensuring your company thrives, now and for years to come, our DuPage County business law attorneys can help you protect your business from lawsuits through preventative measures. When aggressive representation is needed to fight against a suit, we put our knowledge and skills to work for you. Call 630-225-2500 and schedule a consultation to get started.

Source:

http://nprillinois.org/post/small-business-owners-more-optimistic-survey-says#stream/0

Illinois Sues a Second Business Over Non-Compete Agreement – What Employers Need to Know

Illinois small business lawyerWhile most small businesses are only interested in making ends meet, there are large corporations and franchises out there, trying to take advantage of blue-collar workers. Sadly, when employees are paid low wages and asked to fill out a non-compete agreement, they may find themselves stuck, with no way out.

That is why Illinois now has a law on non-compete agreements; two companies have been sued in the past year for violating it. Learn more about this law and what it could mean for your company, and discover how an experienced business law attorney can help you avoid legal problems over improper use of non-compete agreements.

Understanding the Purpose of a Non-Compete Agreement

Non-compete agreements are not meant to keep wages low or violate an employee's rights. Instead, they are supposed to ensure that a company's reputation and trade secrets are protected from its competitors. That is not to say that low-wage paying companies are lacking in trade secrets or that their reputation should not be protected, yet by forcing low-wage employees to sign non-compete agreements, they are protecting their company in a way that is detrimental to the employee. In a country where wages have become stagnant, unfair treatment of low-wage employees is an offense that Illinois is no longer willing to overlook.

Protecting Your Company with a Non-Compete Agreement

If you pay your employees at least $13 per hour, the state will permit you to use a non-compete agreement to protect your company's reputation and/or trade secrets. However, it is critical that you understand the risks associated with developing such an agreement without proper legal assistance. Verbiage, particularly when it comes to issues that might be considered a violation of the employee's rights, must be carefully thought out and well-versed. There are also certain elements that cannot be added to a non-compete agreement. Ensure you do not make a costly mistake by hiring an experienced attorney to draft your non-compete agreement.

Contact Our DuPage County Small Business Attorneys

At Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC, we understand the challenges that small businesses face in today's competitive market. Dedicated and experienced, our DuPage County small business attorneys can listen to the goals and concerns you have about trade secrets and potential market competitors. Provided it is warranted, we can also help you draft a non-compete agreement to protect your company's financial future. Learn more by scheduling a personalized consultation. Call 630-665-2500 today.

Sources:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-illinois-payday-lender-noncompete-lawsuit-20171026-story.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/25/business/economy/illinois-noncompete.html