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Starting a small business can be exciting and fulfill your entrepreneurial spirit. However, the legal side of things can be daunting to the uninitiated.
Fear not - there are many ways to get free legal advice for your small business that can help you navigate the intricacies of business law.
Statutory law vs. common law
Statutory law vs. common law
From seasoned professionals to online resources, free legal advice is available and personalized to help you grow your small business. Let's dive!
How to Get Free US Legal Advice?
If you live in the US, there are several ways to get free legal advice. Professional lawyers, legal clinics, and online forums are just a few of the options available.
Professional attorneys may offer pro bono service or reduced rates for small businesses, while law clinics generally offer free advice and services.
Another option can be online forums that provide useful information on fundamental business law issues.
Searching your state website or your local bar directory may also give you directions on where to look for free or inexpensive legal advice.
Why legal advice is so important for small businesses
Starting a small business can be an exciting and rewarding journey, but navigating the legal side of things can be complex and intimidating for those just starting out.
This is why it is so important to seek free legal help to ensure the success of your small business. Here are six reasons why access to free legal advice is so important for small businesses:
- safe investments– Qualified legal advice ensures that you make the right decisions when it comes to investments, partnerships and contracts to protect your finances.
- protect assets– With the guidance of experienced professionals, you can protect your assets from any potential liabilities or risks that may arise during operations.
- understand federal laws– Knowledge of federal and state laws will help you comply with regulations and avoid unnecessary government restrictions or penalties.
- ensuring compliance– Free legal advice can give you peace of mind that you are complying with labor laws, health regulations, tax regulations and other relevant regulations.
- minimize risks– Understanding potential risks or difficult times ahead ensures you have strategies in place to mitigate any adverse impacts on your business operations.
- Edit documentation quickly– Professional lawyers will assist you quickly and efficiently with paperwork, including permits, leases or any other type of document required to conduct your business.
7 ways to get free legal advice
If you are starting or running a small business, it is important to stay up to date with the laws and comply with the regulations.
Finding free legal advice can be a daunting task. Here are 7 helpful ways to get professional support without breaking the bank.
1. Small Business Administration (SBA)
The Small Business Administration (SBA) is a valuable resource for small business owners who are seeking legal advice but may not be able to afford an attorney.
O SBALegal compliance sectionThe site provides comprehensive information on a variety of legal topics, including maintaining internal records, filing state and federal taxes, and obtaining and maintaining business licenses and permits.
This information is intended to help small business owners understand their legal obligations and ensure they comply with all relevant laws.
In addition to the Legal Compliance section, the SBA offers a variety of other resources and support for small business owners, including access to financing, advisory services, and business training programs.
Whether you are just starting a business or looking to expand your existing operation, SBA can help you overcome the many challenges of running a small business and help you succeed in your endeavor.
In addition, the SBA offers free, low-cost business advice through its network of Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) and Women's Business Centers (WBCs).
These centers offer advice on a variety of topics, including business planning, management, and financial planning.
Whether you are just starting out or looking to expand your existing operation, the SBASmall business resource centerPrograms can help you find the resources and support you need to be successful.
2. Tax Office
Also see:What can small businesses learn from the rich and successful?
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers small business owners and the self-employed a wealth of resources through theControl center for small businesses and the self-employed.
This comprehensive resource offers everything from tax return instructions andtax deductionLegal advice on compliance with the Affordable Care Act and recent tax reforms.
Small business owners can find tax guidance for their specific business structure, including information on completing tax returns, keeping records, and obtaining and maintaining business licenses and permits.
The Tax Center also offers a range of educational resources including web-based workshops, tutorials and other educational tools.
These resources are designed to help self-employed people and small business owners better understand their tax obligations and do their taxes with ease.
Whether you're looking for a guide to filing your taxes, information on small business legal requirements, or tips on how to keep your business compliant, the IRS Small Business and Self-Employed Tax Center has you covered.
3. Online Legal Service
Online legal platforms can provide access to affordable legal support for a variety of needs. These services, sometimes free or with low legal fees, provide helpful resources such as legal forms, advice on structuring a business, family law, and referrals to local attorneys.
You can also use the Ask a Lawyer option to connect with licensed business lawyers for free advice. Some websites where you can ask your legal questions are e.gLegalZoom,lawyers. com,FreeAdvice.com,Hallo, zLawGuru.com.
Want an exact answer? Create a detailed investigation by including “who, what, when, how, will I or will I do” at the beginning. If you supplement the query with additional information, you will get a better answer in much less time.
These online legal websites and services provide assistance with a variety of legal matters, including company formation, estate planning, and trademark registration.
They offer a variety of legal documents and services, from do-it-yourself document preparation to attorney-assisted document review and more.
They make legal services accessible, affordable and easy to use for individuals and small businesses.
4. Legal Blogs
Getting free legal advice from legal blogs can be an incredibly useful resource for anyone looking for information about the law and legal issues.
One of the biggest benefits of using legal blogs for legal advice is that they are easily accessible.
Many legal blogs such asFindLaw.comeno, are available online and can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection, making them a convenient option for those who do not have the resources to schedule an appointment with an attorney.
Another benefit of legal blogs is that they often offer a wealth of information on a variety of legal topics.
From criminal law to contract law, legal blogs cover a wide variety of topics and make it easy to find information about the specific legal issue you are facing.
They can also be an excellent resource for keeping up to date with the latest legal developments and legislative changes.
Legal blogs can help you learn how to create oneBusiness start-up checklist, the pros and cons of differentbusiness structures, ifRegister your company in another state,Things to Do After Forming an LLC, and much more. You can even search for answers to certain questions like "How much does it cost to incorporate in each state'
While legal blogs can be a great resource for free legal advice, it is important to note that the information provided on these blogs is not always accurate or current.
As with any source of information, it is important to take the time to research and review the information provided in legal blogs before using it to make important legal decisions.
While it is important to exercise caution when using this information, the benefits of using legal blogs for legal advice, including the convenience and breadth of information available, make this a valuable resource for anyone in need of legal advice.
5. Pro Bono Legal Clinics
Pro Bono Legal Clinicsprovide legal services to those on low to middle incomes who cannot afford a lawyer. These clinics are staffed by volunteer advocates who devote their time and expertise to helping those in need.
There are many advantages to seeking legal advice from a pro bono law firm, making them an excellent option for anyone who needs legal assistance but cannot afford it.
One of the main benefits of pro bono legal clinics is that they provide access to professional legal advice that many people would not otherwise have access to.
These clinics are staffed by experienced attorneys who have the knowledge and experience to assist with a variety of legal matters.
This includes everything from drafting legal documents and negotiation contracts to representing clients in court.
Another benefit of pro bono clinics is that they are often affiliated with local bar associations, community organizations, and law schools.
This means clients can get a high level of professional legal assistance for free.
This can be particularly beneficial for those dealing with complex legal issues who need access to expert advice.
However, one of the main disadvantages of seeking free legal advice through pro bono clinics is that they are often very busy and in high demand.
This means customers may have to wait a long time for their cases to be processed. In some cases, clients may be turned away because the clinic is already overloaded with other cases.
6. Online Legal Courses
Free online legal courses are a great resource for people looking for legal information and advice. One of the main advantages of these courses is their affordability.
They can be taken from anywhere with an internet connection and at any time, making them an excellent choice for people with busy schedules.
Typically taught by experienced lawyers and legal professionals, these courses offer individuals the opportunity to learn from some of the best in the field. Online law courses are generally self-paced, allowing individuals to learn at their own pace and revise the material as needed.
A potential downside to using online legal courses, however, is that the information provided may not always be current or applicable to particular circumstances. Legal issues can be complex and finding a one-size-fits-all solution in an online course can be difficult.
In such cases, it may be necessary to consult a licensed attorney for more personal and accurate advice.
However, free online legal courses can still be a valuable resource for people seeking general legal information and a better understanding of legal concepts and procedures.
For example theBasics of business lawexplains the differences between asole owner, General Partnership, Limited Partnership, C Corporations and S Corporations. WhileProtect corporate innovations with patentsprovides patent information.
7. Federal Trade Commission
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website is a comprehensive resource for small business owners.
It has a "Tips and Advice" section with a "Business center” subsection containing a variety of documents, blog posts,Disclaimer examples, and reports covering various aspects of running a small business.
This ranges from advertising and marketing to credit and finance to data protection and security. The Business Center also offers a wealth of legal resources.
This section catalogs complaints, reports and opinions on various business-related legal matters. From misleading advertising to withholding tips and scalping tickets online, it provides valuable insight into the handling of these legal cases and their outcomes.
By utilizing these resources, small business owners can gain a deeper understanding of the complex legal landscape in which they operate.
The FTC's Business Center is a valuable tool for staying informed and up-to-date on current legal issues, as well as for getting advice and guidance on how to protect your business from potential legal challenges.
With so many potential resources for free legal advice, it can be difficult to know who to turn to.
To ensure you are getting the best advice for your small business, it is important that you do your research and find an experienced attorney who is able to provide knowledgeable support for your specific business needs.
Contact legal aid professionals, network with other businesses in your community, or do some researchLegal tips for small businessesOnline forums are just a few options to help you find free legal advice for your small business.
Image: Envato Elements, DepositphotosComment ▼
Will law offices answer your questions for free? ›
Will a Lawyer Answer Questions for Free? Generally speaking, yes. Personal injury lawyers, employment lawyers, and others often work on a contingency basis, and also offer free consultations.Is Rocket Lawyer safe to use? ›
Rocket Lawyer is a reliable and affordable option for anyone who requires consistent access to low-level legal advice and legal documents.How can I get free legal advice in Florida? ›
- LawHelp.org is the gateway to legal aid providers in every state.
- FloridaLawHelp.org is the gateway to Florida legal resources.
- Florida Rural Legal Services (provides high-quality civil legal services to address the special legal needs of migrant and seasonal farmworkers throughout Florida.)
Generally, you will be eligible if your income does not exceed 125% of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines. In some counties and in some cases, domestic violence and elderly clients may not be subject to the income guidelines.Can you call a law firm and ask questions? ›
Don't Call if You Just Have a Question
Attorneys generally cannot give you legal advice without fully analyzing the facts of your situation, which takes time. Most attorneys are very busy and will not have time to respond to every question they receive.
The court may order to answer yes/no first before the explanation. The explanation must be relevant to the yes/no answer. The court usually will not allow the witness to wander away from the question that was asked. It is also possible that a seeming yes/no question doesn't have a yes/no answer.How long does it take to get an answer on Rocket Lawyer? ›
How long does it take for Rocket Lawyer to respond? If you use the Ask a Lawyer service by Rocket Lawyer, you will receive an answer to your question within one business day.How long does Rocket Lawyer take to answer? ›
As a Rocket Lawyer member, you can submit your request in seconds. Uploading the document to your account can make the process go even faster. If don't need a full legal document review and just have a simple question, you can send your question instead and you will typically get an answer in less than 1 business day.Why is Rocket Law charging me? ›
Rocket Lawyer may automatically charge you at the end of the trial or for a membership renewal unless you notify us that you want to cancel or downgrade your membership. You can downgrade an auto-renewing paid membership to a free account at any time.How to get free legal advice in Florida over phone? ›
CLSMF HELPline 1-800-405-1417
Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida's (CLSMF) HELPline is an attorney-staffed telephone advice, brief services, pro se, and referral system serving low income individuals, seniors, and other vulnerable people with civil legal issues throughout Central Florida.
What is the senior legal HELPline in Florida? ›
The Department of Elder Affairs' Florida Senior Legal Helpline provides free legal advice and brief service by phone to eligible seniors age 60 and older. The toll-free number is 1-888-895-7873.How do I get a public defender in Florida? ›
In all criminal cases in which the law authorizes the Public Defender to represent an accused individual, the law requires the individuals who wish to be represented by the public defender to fill out the Affidavit of Indigent Status and pay the $50 application fee.How much does a legal aid attorney get paid in Florida? ›
How much does a Legal Aid make in Florida? As of Apr 10, 2023, the average annual pay for the Legal Aid jobs category in Florida is $37,779 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $18.16 an hour. This is the equivalent of $726/week or $3,148/month.What is legal AI? ›
Similar to e-discovery software, AI-powered legal research software allows legal professionals to quickly scan and search large databases of regulations, statutes, practice areas, jurisdictions, case laws, and more. With legal research software, lawyers can gather data and help them understand precedents.How can I get a free divorce in Florida? ›
You shouldn't pay anyone (not even a low cost divorce firm) for basic Florida divorce information. The Florida Supreme Court will provide all legal forms to you for free. Most family law forms can be found online if you have the time, energy and inner fortitude to search for divorce forms online.What is the hardest question to ask a lawyer? ›
- What's your opinion of the probate process?
- Under what conditions do you recommend a Living Trust?
- How do I protect my children from abusive relatives if something happens to me?
- Can I keep my kids from controlling their entire inheritance at 18?
interrogatories - Written questions asked to one party by an opposing party, who must answer them in writing under oath. Interrogatories are a part of discovery in a lawsuit.What do you say in court when you don't want to answer? ›
Good ways to say anything but "No Comment" to questions you really don't want to answer:
- "I'm sorry but I'm not able to speak to that subject"
- "Thanks for asking but I'm not able to answer that question"
- "I'm sorry but that information is proprietary"
You have the constitutional right to remain silent. In general, you do not have to talk to law enforcement officers (or anyone else), even if you do not feel free to walk away from the officer, you are arrested, or you are in jail. You cannot be punished for refusing to answer a question.What do you say in court when you don't agree? ›
Objection. Objection to the form, your Honor. Objection, your Honor, leading.
Is Rocket Lawyer app free? ›
After your free trial, it's only $39.99 per month to enjoy the full suite of legal services available on Rocket Lawyer.Do lawyers object to questions or answers? ›
The real legal world is rarely as tense an active as courtroom dramas would have you believe. For example, your attorney is bound by the law when objecting to questions: he may only interrupt if the question is irrelevant or improper. If the answer hurts your case, but is relevant, there is legally nothing he can do.Who is better than LegalShield? ›
|Company||Why We Picked It|
|Avvo||Best Free Advice|
|LegalZoom||Best Self-Service Documents|
|FindLaw||Best for Finding a Lawyer|
Rocket Lawyer is the most affordable, easiest way to get all the legal and tax help you need for yourself, your family and your business. Whether you need to make and sign documents, get legal advice or have your taxes done by a professional, Rocket Lawyer is here to help.How long will a Lawyer reply to an email? ›
A: The lawyer should be responsive to your questions within 24-48 hours after you left a message. If the lawyer is not responsive, perhaps he or she is on vacation and unable to return.Why do attorneys take so long to respond? ›
Your Lawyer Is Busy with Other Cases
Your attorney may not be able to respond to you right away because they're dealing with another client's negotiations or trial. Being busy with another client isn't an excuse to completely fail to respond to another client.
Stopping an automatic, recurring payment on a credit card is different. Start by putting in your request with the vendor. But if the vendor continues to charge your credit card, contact your card issuer. You'll have 60 days to dispute the charge, starting when the card issuer sends you the statement with the charges.Is Rocket Lawyer easy to cancel? ›
To cancel your Rocket Lawyer subscription, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and request support to cancel your account. Line is your one-stop destination for all the information you need to delete your Rocket Lawyer account, unsubscribe or cancel a free trial .What is rocket law charge? ›
Start your free trial. Or get a full year of legal protection for just $239.99/yr — HALF OFF MONTHLY PRICE! Start your annual membership. Member benefits.How do lawyers get access to text messages? ›
Federal law prevents companies from producing these documents without a court order or subpoena. Text message records must be obtained from a party's cell phone provider. An attorney can obtain a court order or subpoena to get the records directly from the service provider.
Is there a hands free phone law in Florida? ›
Texting and Driving in the State of Florida
Florida Statute 316.305 states that it is one hundred percent illegal for drivers to use their hands to text on a wireless communication device while operating a motor vehicle. A device includes cell phone use, notebooks, tablets, laptops, video games, and many other devices.
That means you can currently talk on the phone while driving in Florida with a few exceptions. You can do this by using a hands-free device to make and receive phone calls. But it also means you can put your cell phone up to your ear with your hands to make and receive calls.What does the Florida Department of Elder Affairs do? ›
The Department of Elder Affairs administers programs and services for elders across the state of Florida through 11 Area Agencies on Aging, which operate as Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs).What time does the legal hotline open in Florida? ›
Free Legal Hotline
Here are the details: Call: 407-438-1409. Hours: 9 AM - 4:45 PM, Monday through Friday. More details.
They may also contact the legal hotline directly at (850) 385-0611. TTY Access to the legal hotline can be reached at 1-800-621-4202. The legal hotline operates Monday-Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 5 p.m., with the exception of holidays.Is a public defender free in Florida? ›
Q: Is a Public Defender free? A: No. An application fee of $50 is required by state law. Also, if you enter a plea or are convicted at trial, the court will enter an order requiring payment of reasonable attorneys' fees.Can you be denied a public defender in Florida? ›
Yes, the $50 Public Defender Application Fee was created by the Florida Legislature. The fee is not refundable and applies whether or not a Public Defender is actually appointed for you. However, if you do not have the money, you cannot be denied a Public Defender.Who benefits most from a public defender? ›
Public defenders represent individuals who are charged with crimes but are unable to hire a defense attorney. This means that public defenders often work to help disadvantaged members of society.What if I can't afford a lawyer in Florida? ›
If you have a civil legal problem but cannot afford to hire a private lawyer, you still may have access to the legal system through your local legal services-legal aid organization which provides free or low cost legal services to persons with low incomes.What percentage does a lawyer get from a lawsuit in Florida? ›
If your case settles after the lawyer files a lawsuit (which means a lot more work for the lawyer), the vast majority of lawyers will take 40% off the top of your recovery. You should expect to pay 40% if: you have serious injuries.
How much do lawyers take from your claim in Florida? ›
In Florida, there are two requirements for an attorney's fee of 40% of to be reasonable in a personal injury case. First, the lawyer must have sued. Second, the defendant must have denied liability or the time to file an answer has passed.What is virtual legal? ›
A virtual law firm is a legal practice that does not have a brick-and-mortar office, but operates from the homes or satellite offices of its lawyers, usually delivering services to clients at a distance utilizing modern technology for communication.What are the disadvantages of AI in legal? ›
The use of AI in criminal law is especially problematic due to the potential consequences of making liberty-depriving decisions based on an algorithm. Society may trust these algorithms too much and make decisions based on their predictions, even if the technology may not be as “intelligent” as it appears.How does Harvey AI work? ›
Harvey AI assists with contract analysis, due diligence, litigation, and regulatory compliance and can help generate insights, recommendations, and predictions based on data. As a result, lawyers can deliver faster and more cost-effective solutions for client issues.How much is a wife entitled to in a divorce in Florida? ›
Under Florida divorce law, all marital property is subject to an equitable distribution. Typically, the court will divide marital property 50/50, unless there are reasons why an equal split would be inequitable (unfair).What is the fastest easiest way to divorce in Florida? ›
Couples who wish to divorce quickly in Florida can use the process of Simplified Dissolution of Marriage. This is the quickest way to get a divorce in Florida and will only take about 30 days from the time you file to the time your divorce is finalized.How can I get free legal advice in NC? ›
Call 1-800-662-7660 or submit a request online. Legal Aid of North Carolina provides free advice and representation to low-income people in all 100 counties of North Carolina. Apply for help at your nearest Legal Aid of North Carolina office, call the HelpLine at 1-866-219-5262, or apply online.Should you talk without a lawyer? ›
You should never talk to the police without first consulting with an attorney. Police officers are trained to obtain confessions, admissions and inconsistencies. If you are innocent, law enforcement can use inconsistencies in your statements as evidence of guilt.Can a law student answer legal question? ›
Can Law Students Give Legal Advice? An individual must be a licensed attorney to give legal advice. This does not include law students, as they have not yet taken and passed the state bar examination.What is the free legal answers program in NC? ›
North Carolina Free Legal Answers is a virtual legal advice clinic in which qualifying users post civil legal questions at no cost to be answered by pro bono attorneys licensed in their state.
What is the Legal Aid Helpline for North Carolina? ›
Toll-Free: 1 (866) 219-LANC (5262)Does NC State have legal services? ›
University Student Legal Services (USLS) was created by Student Government to provide high quality legal services to currently enrolled NC State students.What not to tell a lawyer? ›
- My case will be easy money for you. ...
- I have already done the work for you. ...
- I forgot I had an appointment. ...
- I've already talked to a lot of other lawyers. ...
- I don't have all my documents.
You should be honest with your lawyer
Telling your lawyer the truth and disclosing important facts that can affect your case is important. This is especially true in criminal cases. If you withhold information from your lawyer, it can jeopardize your case.
The right to remain silent comes from the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. It states that no person “shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself.” This has a few different meanings. First and foremost, it means the prosecution cannot force you to testify at your own trial.What to say when you don t want to answer a question in court? ›
You can also refuse to answer the question, but be sure to be polite. “Say, 'I appreciate that this is of interest but we don't feel sharing the information is appropriate, especially at this time. But I'd be glad to answer other questions if you have them,'” says Sullivan. “Appreciate the interest but draw lines.”Does a lawyer have to do what you say? ›
The client is entitled to decide what to do in response to an offer. Clients may accept or reject an offer, ignore it or make a counter-offer. The lawyer must take all offers of settlement to the client, even if the lawyer does not believe the offer is a good one.What are the three types of objections? ›
- Ambiguous, confusing, misleading, vague, unintelligible: the question is not clear and precise enough for the witness to properly answer.
- Arguing the law: counsel is instructing the jury on the law.
- Argumentative: the question makes an argument rather than asking a question.
It points to the key difference between a legal opinion and legal advice—i.e., that a legal opinion is an attorney's analysis based on past or present facts, while legal advice is an attorney's counsel and guidance as to what future actions the client should take.Why is there no one right answer to a legal problem? ›
There is no "right" answer to a legal problem because the law itself is only a guideline on how people should interact, and it provides a mechanism for resolving conflict that can be taken in many different directions by an attorney.
What is a legal question example? ›
For example, in a traffic case, the question of whether the defendant was speeding would be a question of fact. Whether the speeding regulation applied to the parking lot in which the citation was issued would be a question of law.