Start-Up Businesses And The Dangers Of Legal Self-Help Websites

Entrepreneurs naturally have to watch their capital closely. You have a limited amount of capital to get started with and legal fees are high. The option for many new businessmen and women is to opt for legal self-help websites. To save on the cost of dedicated legal advice, they’ll search for an online guide and clumsily apply it to their situation.

This is the wrong thing to do. Entrepreneurs should stay away from these websites, apart from for general interest purposes.

Here are some of the reasons why.

General Guidelines

A self-help website can only offer a limited number of examples where they apply general legal principles. If you’re lucky enough to own a business that matches these examples perfectly, self-help websites are fantastic. For everyone else, these general guidelines will only offer you context. They won’t offer a solution.

When you employ a legal professional, you’re not employing them for their legal knowledge. You’re employing them for their practical ability to take their legal knowledge and use it for your specific situation.

Legal Requirements and the Changing Law

A website that offers free legal advice won’t constantly update itself each time the law changes. Furthermore, there’s no telling what laws the site follows. They might focus on Federal laws only, as opposed to laws that only apply in a limited number of states.

They aren’t watching out for you. It doesn’t matter to them if you get yourself in a legal tangle, so they have no incentive to follow-up on any enquiries. And if you do find yourself in a difficult position legally, it can cost much more than you initially expected to start putting it right again.

Ruining Companies

If you’re working with someone else in your company, a legal mistake can rip relationships apart. Whether you’re unsure as to who gets paid what, or what chunk of capital was designed for what, everything has a potential legal implication. The added stress of attempting to deal with these issues will only make the splitting up of a partnership more likely.

A legal self-help website can’t help you. In fact, it’s probably going to lead to every person involved employing their own legal representation. This will only lead to conflict and spiraling legal costs, regardless of who comes out the victor.

It’s not only conflicts between partners that can ruin companies. It requires a lot more time and effort to concentrate on legal matters alone. Think about how much time this takes away from running your business.

The Fees

We’ve spoken about what can happen if things go wrong. You can find yourself in a position where you lose your case, or commit a legal faux pas, and end up paying out far more in legal fees and fines.

Even if you represent yourself using your very limited legal knowledge gleaned from the Internet, it doesn’t protect you from any fees. Professional lawyers have an obligation to try to limit the costs you have to pay.

In the long-term, they will save you money.

James Whitaker is one of the most highly regarded individual at a very prestigious law firm. He shares law related news and advice through his posts. He says when you need a good attorney to fight your messy legal battles for you, contact