6814 Greenwood Avenue N.
Seattle, WA 98103

206.367.1065

Business Law

Opening and operating a small business often touches on important legal issues that, if not appropriately addressed, can result in you losing money, shuttering your business, or worse. Buying a business involves important due diligence so you get what you're paying for, and selling a business requires careful attention to ensure you're getting a good deal.

If you are the owner of a small business, then that business may hold your hopes and dreams for your future and your family. Diligent, knowledgeable counsel can make a significant difference on whether that business reaches its potential.

Washington Small Business Lawyer

Joyce Schwensen is an experienced Washington small business lawyer who can assist, guide and represent you and your business on legal matters that face your company or your potential company. Joyce Schwensen has worked with a broad range of companies, including retail, restaurants, medical practices, real estate management, consulting firms and more. Call the Law Offices of Joyce S. Schwensen today at (206) 367-1065 to schedule a consultation to discuss your small business's needs.

Joyce Schwensen is based in Seattle and practices throughout Washington.


Washington Small Business Law Information Center


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Opening a Small Business in Washington

When starting a small business, it's very important to have your legal ducks in a row. Starting off on the right foot could mean avoiding significant problems down the road. There are many legal issues and decisions that small business owners should make when planning and opening their enterprise.

If you're starting a company, you'll need to make sure that when you're ready to start dealing with customers when they come in. That may mean having agreement templates that cover the breadth of possibilities for the type of transactions you engage in, and that properly represent your best interests. You might also have template agreements for vendors and suppliers you work with.

These agreements should be carefully constructed to ensure your rights and interests are protected. A Washington small business attorney can assist you in drafting contracts.


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Purchasing a Small Business

Purchasing an existing business can involve intense negotiations and a watchful eye. It's important that before you buy the business you know everything that can be known about the company you are purchasing. It is critical to avoid unpleasant surprises, such as unpaid taxes encumbering the assets you are buying.

"Due diligence" involves carefully reviewing the business's assets and records, including financial statements and tax documents, to ensure that the company is in the condition its sellers are representing to you. It is a careful investigation of all existing and potential liabilities. A diligent attorney will prepare a contract that protects you from any obligation to pay the purchase price until after you have had an opportunity to do thorough due diligence.

Depending on the type of business and the nature of the transaction, you may be required to deal with certain governmental and regulatory agencies, including federal, state and local agencies. Your small business lawyer can help prepare necessary filings and represent you in any regulatory hearings or procedures.

Additional factors could come into play if you are merging the business with your own. Your company may be taking on the obligations and liabilities of the other company. You'll want to make sure your and your business's interests are protected once the two business entities have become one, and an experienced lawyer can help you achieve this.


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Selling a Small Business

When selling a business, it's important to have a full understanding of just what you are selling. For instance, what assets are you selling, and what are you keeping? What intellectual property are you selling? What is a sufficient price that represents the value of the business you built? How will you be paid? Will you be financing the deal?

It's also very important that any representations and warranties made represent the true nature and value of your company. A small business lawyer can help you understand the implications and consequences of the deal you're making, and prepare the purchase and sale agreement in a way that protects your interests. A lawyer can also negotiate on your behalf with the buyer to help you get the best deal possible.


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Loan Transactions for Washington Businesses

Over the course of growing a business, it's often necessary to acquire more capital in order to expand operations or gain new assets. Many small businesses borrow in order to grow. In the process, they sign loan agreements.

It's important to understand what the loan agreements mean for you and your company. A small business loan lawyer can review your loan agreement and advise you on the potential ramifications to make sure you're making an informed borrowing choice.


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Law Offices of Joyce S. Schwensen | Washington Business Attorney

Business constantly touches on the law, and it's important that you understand the implications and consequences of your business decisions so that you can make the best choices. Washington small business lawyer Joyce Schwensen has experience assisting all kinds of business with their legal needs. Call the Law Offices of Joyce S. Schwensen today at (206) 367-1065 to set up a consultation.

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