All businesses are subject to regulations imposed by federal, state, and local governmental agencies. However, the rules that apply to a specific business can vary depending on the type of business and its size, location, and other factors. As a result, obtaining legal advice on what regulations apply to your business is essential to staying in compliance and minimizing potential liability for violations.
General Business Regulations
Some regulations affect every type of business. Examples of these regulations include:
- Wage and hour laws
- Discrimination laws
- Workers’ compensation laws
- Family Medical Leave Act
- Occupational Safety and Health Act
- Immigration laws
However, federal, state, and local governments may have different provisions for the same type of regulation, and both must be complied with. For example, there is a federal minimum wage but many states impose a higher minimum wage. Some states and localities have more stringent and broader discrimination protections than exists at the federal level. Further, these regulations are constantly changing. Accordingly, employers must stay abreast of all their responsibilities or risk opening up the business to litigation, civil penalties, and other consequences for failure to comply with the law.
Governmental agencies impose additional regulations on some industries. Common examples include:
- Real estate industry: licensing requirements, fair housing laws
- Manufacturing industry: environmental and safety regulations
- Financial services industry: financial disclosure and privacy laws
- Healthcare industry: HIPAA privacy laws
Violating these regulations can lead to business closures, fines, penalties and costly litigation.
Legal Risk Assessment
To avoid problems, an attorney can conduct a legal risk assessment for your business. This is a process wherein an attorney reviews your operations, documents, and employment practices to identify potential concerns and recommend ways to mitigate those risks.
The assessment should be done regularly to ensure you remain compliant. By retaining a firm as General Counsel, a business can benefit from having an attorney who can monitor ongoing regulatory changes and updates and proactively work with you to ensure that you are not caught off guard or left exposed.
Our firm provides General Counsel services to businesses, providing the benefits of a full-time general counsel at a price that makes such benefits available to smaller businesses. We give clients the flexibility to obtain on-demand access to highly skilled attorneys to assist them with a wide array of legal and business issues. Contact us to learn more about how we can help your company.