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Do Small Businesses Need Mediation Lawyers?

Monday, May, 21, 2012

A common question in the world of small businesses is if they need mediation lawyers—or lawyers at all. The expenses of having an attorney can seem prohibitive—they charge by the hour even in issues that do not involve disputes—litigious, mediated or arbitrated. The problem for many small business owners is that they are not trained in legal issues, and mistakes made on this level can cost them far more than having a lawyer on hand.

Workplace Mediation—The Most Basic Problems


When employees enter the picture, there are eventually going to be disputes. This can be especially ugly if these employees are members of labor unions. They have their own lawyers, and a small business owner could easily be taken to the cleaners if they do not have legal counsel.


Even without the threat of unions, many small business owners can be out of their depth in harassment cases, discrimination cases and even disputes borne out of personality clashes. On one hand, these kinds of problems can undermine employee morale, increase the employee turnover rate, or even leave an employer without any workers. On the other hand, a single individual or class action dispute over these issues can cost a small business owner dearly without a mediation attorney on hand.

Civil Mediation for Growth—Partnerships, Franchises and Corporations


While having an attorney assist with the original incorporation paperwork and other business-related documents is greatly helpful, mediation lawyers truly make up for their expense when the small business becomes a partnership, a franchise or a corporation. These decisions are much more complicated in a legal sense than the startup documentation.


When a business owner takes on a partner, joins a franchise or forms a corporation, he has to be advised on if the contracts are legitimate, predatory, or have loopholes that may be overlooked until it is too late. The same holds true when a business has to downsize. Partners split, a different franchise offers a “too good to be true” contract offer, and corporations break up. In all these cases, a mediation lawyer can ensure that these events happen with minimal expense and hard feelings between the parties.