We’re here with practical legal information for your business. Learn about employment law, company law and more.

Setting up a business involves complying with a range of legal requirements. Find out which ones apply to you and your new enterprise.

While poor governance can bring serious legal consequences, the law can also protect business owners and managers and help to prevent conflict.

Whether you want to raise finance, join forces with someone else, buy or sell a business, it pays to be aware of the legal implications.

From pay, hours and time off to discipline, grievance and hiring and firing employees, find out about your legal responsibilities as an employer.

Marketing matters. Marketing drives sales for businesses of all sizes by ensuring that customers think of their brand when they want to buy.

Commercial disputes can prove time-consuming, stressful and expensive, but having robust legal agreements can help to prevent them from occurring.

Whether your business owns or rents premises, your legal liabilities can be substantial. Commercial property law is complex, but you can avoid common pitfalls.

With information and sound advice, living up to your legal responsibilities to safeguard your employees, customers and visitors need not be difficult or costly.

As information technology continues to evolve, legislation must also change. It affects everything from data protection and online selling to internet policies for employees.

Intellectual property (IP) isn't solely relevant to larger businesses or those involved in developing innovative new products: all products have IP.

Knowing how and when you plan to sell or relinquish control of your business can help you to make better decisions and achieve the best possible outcome.

From bereavement, wills, inheritance, separation and divorce to selling a house, personal injury and traffic offences, learn more about your personal legal rights.

Are entrepreneurs getting younger?

14 March 2018

Are entrepreneurs getting younger?New research reveals that the average age that Brits decide to set up their own business is 27.

Analysis by cloud accounting software company Xero has found that entrepreneurial spirit is getting younger, with 69% of new businesses set up in the past five years having been started by those aged 18-34.

Within that group, the average age that would-be entrepreneurs decide to go it alone is 20. Those aged over 45 who now run their own business typically had their own lightbulb moment at 35.

The survey of 1,000 small business owners also found that eight out of ten start-ups begin life with friends or relatives of the founder being roped in to help out.

Small business owners said making the right hires (32%), the inability to switch off (29%) and late payments (29%) are their biggest barriers to success. The ability to be adaptable (31%), putting accounting support in place from day one (23%) and networking with inspiring people and peers (22%) are the three pieces of advice small business owners wish they'd been given when they started out.

The findings also show that today's small business owners put a priority on work/life balance - eight in ten say they "work to live" rather than "live to work". In addition, 82% of small business owners say they are now running the business they always dreamed of and nine in ten say setting up shop is one of the accomplishments they are most proud of.

Respondents said being their own boss is the best thing about owning a business (51%), followed by being able to control work/life balance (38%) and being able to get things done the way they want (35%).

However, in a world where only four in ten businesses reach their fifth birthday, the research found that a fifth of start-ups launch without a proper business plan. A previous report from Xero found that just 14% of failed SMEs used software to manage their finances compared to 58% of successful business owners, while 20% of failed small firms invested in marketing compared to 49% of those who have succeeded.

Gary Turner, md and co-founder of Xero, said: "Small business owners don't always have an easy run of it. But, despite this, every day I see just how passionate and eager they are to turn their dreams into realities. While this passion is fantastic, it will only get you so far. We know that survival rates of small businesses with watertight business plans and the right processes are far greater than those who fail to put the right provisions in place - so it would be a huge shame to see this enthusiasm go to waste."

Xero has launched the #behindyourbusiness campaign to encourage more would-be entrepreneurs to take the plunge. Ade Hassan reveals how she set up her lingerie business in this YouTube video.

News type: