From the rise of niche industries and small startups to big takeovers, countries are gradually recovering from the economic downfall to prosper in new sectors. Production, distribution, marketing and employment are just a few of the major factors that businesses have to think about; however, even more crucially, it is the legal issues that can determine the success and survival of a business.

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Staying on track with taxes

Keeping up to date with records can be a challenging task for businesses of all sizes, either because there is not the sufficient staff, time, or resources, or because of mismanagement and disorganization. However, taxes are one area where governments pay special attention. Many businesses that get into tax trouble are not necessarily committing deliberate fraud, but neglect to properly monitor and submit accurate tax returns or overlook expenses or profits. Regardless of whether a company is hiring an accountancy firm to handle taxes or are managing the issue in-house, it is still ultimately responsible for ensuring proper tax management. Businesses should be extremely conscientious about keeping taxes in order and employ professionals who are properly equipped to monitor the company’s activities, as well as stay up to date on current tax policy.

Issues of ownership

Plagiarism, copyright issues and other violations of intellectual property are serious matters. Companies should work proactively to ensure that their own material is properly registered, including their own branded trademark. They should also be particularly vigilant when using content belonging to other individuals or organizations. Creative commons media and stock images are frequently used for this reason, but companies should hire the services of someone who is familiar with copyright restrictions as well as rights on intellectual property to give content a run-through before use.

Relationships with employees and customers

Workplaces are required to provide a certain standard of safety and wellbeing for employees and clients. Discrimination, on-site injury and office bullying are a few of the issues that companies occasionally face, and they must put into practice effective policies that directly address these issues to avoid extensive damage and potential lawsuits.

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The same is relevant for customers. Conflict of interest and other problems that can arise between businesses and clients can escalate when not handled immediately and efficiently. A company has an obligation to ensure that it meets particular standards where customer and employee treatment is concerned. COO Bob Bratt of law firm DLA Piper understands the importance of addressing not only basic regulations but also implementing solid policies that safeguard against potential problems that businesses typically face. Bratt’s extensive career – spanning more than 35 years in the industry – has given him considerable insight into how businesses operate, and how to avoid major legal issues. DLA Piper currently operates in various regions across the globe, specializing in legal services for companies.

Staying ahead of the competition can be a challenge for many businesses, and when resources are stretched, some companies may find themselves struggling to keep track of their activity. However, a fully operational and successful business goes hand in hand with legal requirements that protect both business and consumer, and an investment that is beneficial – and sometimes business-saving – in the long term.