What Constitutes Business Law?

Running a business or being involved in a corporation can be a very complicated and stressful experience. One component of this is the fact that there are numerous laws and legal restrictions you must abide by. Many of these regulations fall under the term “business law”. By better understanding what business law entails you are better able to take measures for the legal advancement of your organization.

The following are aspects of business that can fall under legal restrictions, making them important components of business law:

  • Exporting and Importing: If you will be working with customs and international business law in the United States and throughout the world it is important you understand the legal restrictions surrounding this practice.
  • Carrying products over land and sea: If you will be shipping or transporting good across the country it is important you are doing so with an understanding of how transfer laws can negatively and positively impact your methods.
  • Distributing consumer goods: There are many laws surrounding who you may sell and market to depending on the specific products you manufacture. If you are not practicing with an awareness of these restrictions you could lose your business.
  • Manufacturing consumer goods: Depending on your product there can be many laws determining what materials you use, how your goods must be made, and more.
  • Hiring and employment practices: Employment law is strictly enforced; from non-discrimination in hiring to proper compensation for workplace injury, there are many factors of employment law that significantly influence your business.
  • Operations of corporations: Because corporations are public entities they have a unique set of restrictions and obligations to follow from that of other business types.
  • Partnerships and mergers: Partnerships and mergers require legally binding agreements to be reached by multiple parties, usually in the form of contractual decisions.

If you are a business leader it is important you seek the assistance of a legal professional who will help you with the above endeavors while also helping you work towards your business goals and interests.

The Top Law Firms in the United States

The top law firms in the US are actually not all based in New York or Washington DC, some are in Chicago and Pittsburgh, the main industrial centres, and these firms specialize in helping businesses which have a global market. Some of these are Baker and Mackenzie in Chicago and DLA Piper also in Chicago, along with May Blain in the same city and Kana L Gates in Pittsburgh. These firms are among the law firms with the highest number of attorneys, partners and associates in the US.

Baker and Mackenzie and DLA Piper specialize in commercial and business law with offices in many countries, and Baker and Mackenzie pride themselves on employing people from 60 different nationalities, pointing out that this gives them an edge when it comes to knowing how to deal with the business laws in different countries. They assist businesses which trade in the global marketplace and can advise on the laws in different countries. They also have expertise in the culture of the countries in which they have offices -all 68 of them.

Then there are the law firms which also deal with Pro Bono cases and have a more philanthropic outlook, and the top among these are Latham and Watkins who are based in New York and Skaddon, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom also based in New York. The former also has a Diversity Scholarship Program so that more students from different social and ethnic backgrounds get a chance to become lawyers and both take on Pro bono cases. Latham and Watkins won the prestigious American Bar Association Pro Bono Publico Award in 2003, a testimony to their commitment to take non-paying clients as well as the more affluent clients. Latham and Watkins feature regularly in Top 10 lists of American law firms for various reasons, not only because they are the fifth largest employer of attorneys in the US. They have stuck to their roots which were in labor law and tax, before they began their global expansion.

A very well-known law firm, Hogan Lovell’s began in 1904 in the US with Frank J. Hogan who successfully won high-profile politically charged cases soon after he established his firm. On 1st May 2010, Hogan and Hartson merged with Lovell’s of the UK to become one of the top10 global legal services providers. This company is based in Washington DC but has offices all over the world.

Employment Law Is An Important Part Of Business Law

Business law is one of the branches of the huge field of law. There are many things one has to keep in mind when starting a business; let it be a small or a large business. Breaking these laws may land you in deep trouble, so it is always advisable to have some basic knowledge of both small business law and business corporate law. With this knowledge, you are sure of being able to run your business smoothly without any hindrance from the law whatsoever!

One of the most important areas to consider in business law is employment law. If you don’t comply with all the employment laws and regulations, it is highly likely that you will end up in lots of trouble! There are different laws that actually rule the employment basis of both the regular employees and the contract employees of a business. Some of the employment business laws that have to be met by you are FLSA, the Fair Labor Standards Act, The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, Americans with Disabilities Act, the Civil Rights Act of 1966 and the Equal Pay Act of 1963. However, these laws are not connected to the various state employment business laws that you may find to your business! These laws are a different thing altogether. To confirm that your business meets all the employment laws, it is always better to checkup with your HR department.
To run a business, it is important to have a business permit or a license. If you do not have one, there is a high possibility of you having to shutdown your business and to pay hefty fines and penalties. Moreover, in addition to federal business law it is required that you meet the state business law regulations too. And if you have an international based business, you have to be aware of the different international business laws and how they can affect your business, you and your bottom line. You at least have to meet the general international business laws, import laws, any specialized export laws and laws of the country you maintain business with.

Those running online businesses may be of the impression that there are no business laws pertaining to the internet. However, this is not so. There are many internet and online business laws that have to be followed to maintain any online business. The reason for these laws is that the internet explosion over the past decade has forced the government to introduce internet compliance laws to maintain some law and regulation over the internet. So if you by any chance run a website make sure that you abide the internet business laws. If you don’t do so, there is a high possibility of your site being shut down and of you, in the mean time, facing criminal prosecution and huge fines.

Remember that it is not advisable for you to try and comply with all the business laws on your own. There are numerous laws, and the best mode of avoiding falling into any trap would be to get the help of some professional business law firm. These tips are just to give you an idea of the types of business laws existing. However, even if you do hire a business law firm, it is also better, and important for you to have some basic knowledge of business laws!