Cover Your Legal Bases Florence AL

Use a two-step approach to find a good attorney. First, carefully select a firm by getting personal references and then examining the firm’s web site. The web site can give you information on that particular firm’s areas of expertise and their specialty. Also contact state bar associations to check an attorney’s bar certification.

James Bruce Schrimsher
(256) 534-0671
P.O. Box 414
Huntsville, AL
Specialties
Litigation, Corporate, Probate, Real Estate, LLC, Wills
Education
Auburn University, Auburn,University of Alabama
State Licensing
Alabama

Craig Drake Olmstead
(251) 943-4000
234 Office Park Dr
Gulf Shores, AL
Specialties
Banking, Litigation, Contracts, Commercial, Maritime
Education
Samford University, Cumberland School of Law,No Law School provided
State Licensing
Alabama, Florida

Kirk Debardeleben Smith
(205) 933-8893
1400 Park Place Tower, 2001 Park Place North
Birmingham, AL
Specialties
Litigation, Insurance, Commercial
Education
Vanderbilt University
State Licensing
Georgia

Kathryn S. Crawford
(205) 423-0010
12 OFFICE PARK CIR STE 101
BIRMINGHAM, AL
Specialties
Tax, Divorce, Corporate
Education
University of Alabama School of Law,University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa (main campus)
State Licensing
Alabama, Georgia

Debra Taylor Lewis
(205) 226-8706
1901 Sixth Avenue North,Suite 1500
Birmingham, AL
Specialties
Business, Real Estate, Commercial
Education
Cumberland School Of Law
State Licensing
Texas

Cheryl Baswell
(256) 288-0130
4092 S Memorial Pkwy Ste 100
Huntsville, AL
Specialties
Business
Education
South Texas College of Law
State Licensing
Texas

Thomas Michael Goodrich II
(205) 328-9445
15 R Arrington Blvd N, St 301
Birmingham, AL
Specialties
Business
Education
University of Alabama School of Law
State Licensing
Alabama

Robert E. Lee Garner
(205) 254-1417
1400 Park Place Tower, 2001 Park Place North
Birmingham, AL
Specialties
Business, Mergers & Acquisitions, Federal Regulation
Education
Harvard University
State Licensing
Georgia

Robert P. Fann
(954) 771-4118
1200 Providence Park, Suite 200
Birmingham, AL
Specialties
Insurance, Commercial, Aviation
State Licensing
DC, Florida, Georgia

William Christopher Waller Jr.
(334) 387-7680
2000 Interstate Park Drive, Suite 204
Montgomery, AL
Specialties
Litigation, Business
State Licensing
Alabama

Cover Your Legal Bases

Provided By: 

Even if Just a Part-Time Business, it Makes Sense to Use a Legal “Professional”
By Jim R. Sapp

While you may be able to handle most of the issues that will arise in a new part-time business, you will want professional assistance for more complex legal issues. Even the smallest businesses need legal advice from the beginning. Don't wait until you have a legal problem to look for an attorney.

Selecting Process

Use a two-step approach to find a good attorney. First, carefully select a firm by getting personal references and then examining the firm’s web site. The web site can give you information on that particular firm’s areas of expertise and their specialty. Also contact state bar associations to check an attorney’s bar certification.

You don’t have the time or money to pay someone to learn about your specific industry, so find a professional who is servicing your business sector already. If your company is highly specialized, a business trade publication may list professionals who will understand your specific needs.

Second, when you have settled on one or two law firms, conduct a face-to-face interview with the candidates before you hire. Interview the specific individuals who will service your business and are close in proximity. Ask questions, such as where they went to school, what their expertise is, and if they have experience in your industry. Other good questions include:

• What is your hourly billing rate?
• How often do you increase your rate?
• Can I talk to one or two other small business people you work for?
• What types of work do you most enjoy?

Make your final selection carefully. It is expensive to switch law firms!

Issues An Attorney Can Help You With:
You should do as much for your part-time business as you can yourself; however, a lawyer should review the complex issues. To begin, write a list of exactly what you want the attorney to do for you.

Choosing a Business Structure
An attorney with small or home business expertise can assist you in selecting the structure for your business: a sole proprietorship; partnership; a corporation; or a limited liability company (LLC). An attorney can also help you complete the necessary forms to incorporate your business. Further, it’s important to have the name and address of an attorney for a loan document or any leases you need to have reviewed.

Safeguarding Intellectual Property
An attorney can also help you safeguard your intellectual property, and reserve your own Internet domain name, copyrights, trademarks, and patents. An attorney can also help you to avoid violating other companies’ copyrights, trademarks, or patents.

Conflict Mediation
An attorney can also help you mediate conflicts with consumers and with vendors before they become expensive litigation or before relationships with them are beyond repair. An attorney can also advise you on how to handle potential claims and avoid lawsuits.

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