This post is one in a series designed to help SME businesses benchmark their business and create a best practice business improvement plan across all of their business processes.  You can find the links to the full series here.  

Why is it important to ensure you have the right business, legal and financial structures in place?

  1. Businesses need to be structured appropriately to protect your personal assets from business claims and liabilities.
  2. Valuable assets in your business may need to be quarantined in a separate business entity to protect them against the debts of the trading entity.
  3. You owe it to your family and their financial security to structure your business, legal and financial affairs in the most efficient ways possible.

How does your business measure up?

Review your business against this best practice benchmark now

BEST PRACTICE BENCHMARK: We have the right business, legal and financial structures in place to ensure that my business and family are protected and to achieve my business and personal goals.  #Risk

Here’s a checklist to help you determine that you have the right business, legal and financial structures in place to ensure that your business and family are protected and to achieve your business and personal goals.

  • We understand the advantages and disadvantages of our type of business structure.
  • We have a business structure which appropriately deals with tax minimisation, i.e. the best use of available tax benefits.
  • We have a business structure which protects personal assets of the proprietors from claims against our business.
  • Our business structure provides flexibility for the distribution of income earned by the business.
  • Our significant business assets, for example our business premises, valuable equipment and intellectual property are held in separate legal entities.
  • We have a well drafted shareholders agreement or other appropriate partnership agreement in place.
  • We have a suitable business succession agreement, which addresses the transfer of a proprietors interest and funding for the transfer, should a proprietor die or become totally and permanently disabled.

About the SMART-Connect Best Practice Business Law Advisor

Harvey Bowlt

Harvey Bowlt

Business Law Specialist

Harvey is an Accredited Specialist in Business Law, one of only 107 appointed by the Law Institute of Victoria. He has over 30 years’ experience in both South Africa and Australia. Prior to immigrating to Australia in 2004 Harvey enjoyed a successful career as an Attorney, Notary and Conveyancer in South Africa and was a partner in a Cape Town law firm, where he specialised in High Court litigation, commercial and property work. For the past 13 years Harvey has practised solely in commercial law and specialises in managing risk in businesses.

Harvey started Bowlt Commercial Lawyers because he recognised that modern law firms need to be more flexible and attuned to clients’ requirements, particularly by:

  • Providing Specialist Services-competent is not good enough!
  • Being accessible and responsive to clients’ specific needs
  • Providing personalised, commercially practical legal advice and agreements
  • Offering flexible consultation arrangements (including at clients’ premises or another mutually convenient venue)
  • Providing realistic turnaround times for work, and
  • Offering agreed fees, where appropriate.

Harvey is happy to work with any business, provided they have the vision and drive to make their business a success, and understand the value of a trusted advisor like Harvey assisting them with the journey.

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