Affordable Contracts & Agreement Lawyers
High quality lawyers on-demand to review and customize your contractGet Started for Free
Post a Job
Hire your Lawyer
Here at UpCounsel, we want to help you hire a top contract attorney who can help save you time and money with reviewing, drafting, and/or negotiating complex legal agreements on your behalf - ensuring you are protected and get peace of mind.
Legal contracts often come in many different lengths and forms, and are typically filled with terms and provisions that are very difficult to understand. Often times, many people sign these contracts without fully interpreting what they’re bargaining for, which can end up costing them a lot of their time and money down the road.
This is why it’s very important to have your agreements reviewed by attorneys who can sift through all of the necessary terms and draft provisions that match your specific needs and protect your business’s interests at a nominal cost for peace of mind.
To get you started, you can easily post a job for free and compare custom quotes from several attorneys who can best help you.
Why Hire a Lawyer?
Why Hire a Commercial Agreement, Contract, and Legal Services Lawyer?
Contract law is very important to your business. Whether you're a startup or you've been in operation for decades, an attorney who knows contract law puts you ahead of the game. Typical contracts include:
- Property and equipment leases
- Partnership agreements
- Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs)
- Employment considerations
Each of these is necessary when it comes to running a business. That's why you need a top lawyer to walk you through each aspect. Remember that a contract isn't legally binding unless it contains:
- An offer
- Intention of Legal Consequences
Because each contract idea requires so many parts, it's important to have an attorney with knowledge and experience. Without help, you may suffer from legal problems.
Contract law, commercial law, and legal issues are all a normal part of doing business. Discussing, negotiating, and agreeing on terms between suppliers or contractors make operations run more smoothly. Failure to hire a top lawyer that's familiar with contract law and legal issues may end in disaster. Breach of contract or an invalid contract are both negative consequences.
More than anything, remember that the top reason to hire the best commercial lawyer is to protect the legal rights of the business owners.
One of the biggest problems for business owners is deciding what you need an attorney to do. Some tasks to consider without the aid of a lawyer may include:
- Writing a business plan
- Setting up a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) or business ownership
- Researching and finding a business name
- Applying for a state and national employer identification number (EIN)
- Interviewing and hiring employees
There are even more tasks business owners can complete, but only if they feel comfortable doing so. The rest require the help of a top commercial lawyer unless you have many years of experience in the business. Some of these instances include:
- Litigation involving former employees
- Local, state, and federal government investigations into your business practices
- Making a special allocation of profits or losses
- Negotiating the sale of your company or assets
- Negotiating mergers
- Environmental issues that may result in penalties or fines
Without proper representation, you risk losing the business or paying high costs to save it.
Another reason for hiring a commercial lawyer is to prevent complex legal situations. If you handle legal issues before they arise, you minimize your risk of potential lawsuits. It's relatively safe to say you won't need a lawyer for every issue. Having one on your side gives you peace of mind and someone to fight for you.
A commercial attorney is a valuable asset for advice or legal questions. For example, they can give you suggestions on what questions to ask during an interview. They can also give you ideas for negotiating better contracts with suppliers and customers.
How to Find the Best Lawyer
How to Find the Best Commercial Agreement, Contract, and Legal Services Lawyer
Finding a great commercial lawyer or contract attorney isn't always easy. It requires you to find someone who's reasonably priced, knowledgeable, and friendly.
- Ask for work experience
- One of the biggest problems faced when finding a lawyer is filtering out general practice lawyers. Many of these attorneys say they deal with commercial and contract law. However, it's just one of a broad range of things that they litigate. Because they don't devote their time to business law, they may not have the experience to tackle complex business contracts.
- Another way to find the best commercial lawyer is by checking with past employers. The largest law firms attract the best law students. If you see a big name on the résumé, it's probably a sign that they're a great option, at least on paper.
- Read the testimonials
- Attorneys are business people. They won't turn down jobs they feel capable of handling. This improves their revenue and client base. However, this doesn't mean they're qualified to handle your business. Reading testimonials gives you insight into prior dealings. This lets you know what they're capable of handling. If they don't have the expertise you want, keep looking.
- Discussing Needs
- A top commercial attorney doesn't discuss money right off the bat. Instead, they get as much information as they can about your business. This approach shows that trust and a symbiotic relationship is more important than profits. It helps show trust at the first meeting. By finding out more about your business, they can give you guidance. You can also bounce questions off them to see how much they know.
- Pricing Options
- Great commercial lawyers have different pricing options. Long, complex contracts that require more labor cost more. Basic contracts often have lower costs or a flat rate. Remember that high prices don't always mean you're getting a better product. Don't be afraid to shop around, even if you're quoted a great rate. Many times a low rate means shoddy work.
Questions to Ask
Questions to Ask a Commercial Agreement, Contract, and Legal Services Lawyer
No matter what type of business you're in, you need a commercial, contract, or legal services attorney to handle some of your business matters. Make sure to consider these questions.
- Where will any disputes be settled?
One problem that affects businesses is where disputes are settled. If you have a contract with a company that's hundreds or thousands of miles away, you may have to show up in court to defend yourself. To avoid this pitfall, ask your attorney where you will have any settlements. This helps save money on costs or loss of business for travel.
- Is there a provisional fee?
A provisional fee is one that requires a business to pay more if the lawyer loses the case. This can often cause the losses to double or more. Instead of making a mistake, ask the attorney if they have provisional fees. You may be able to negotiate them away.
- How many cases have you handled?
It's important to know the experience and clientele of your attorney. However, knowing how many cases is just as important. In the case of a breach of contract lawyer, knowing how many cases they settled in and out of court shows just how efficient they are. If most of their cases go to trial, they may not have the negotiation skills that you want. However, it could also mean they don't accept lowball offers. There's no substitute for an interview, but knowing this information is a definite help.
- What contracts do I need?
Before you start your business, you should consult an attorney to see what contracts you need. Most will give you this information free of charge or at minimal cost. This helps reduce the number of disputes, encourages proper pay from customers, establishes beneficial relationships with employers, and more. It's always better to draft more contracts than necessary, so having an attorney that's up to the task is an excellent advantage.
- What are my risks?
A good commercial attorney does what you ask. A great attorney does this but also assesses other risks of the business. By reviewing your business plan and needs, they can draft the documents you need. This can include proactive aspects such as insurance or future business dealings. By taking these into account, you can minimize legal costs in the future.
- Who will handle my work?
If you decide to go with a small firm or solo practitioner, chances are the person you interview will handle your work. If you hire a larger firm, make sure to ask who will handle your work. Many large law firms give basic assignments to junior associates. Though these lawyers may have a great education, they usually have little experience. This may lead to problems in the future. To avoid any chance of this happening, make sure to ask your attorney who will handle the workload for your business.
- Who are your other clients?
Asking this question is two-pronged. First, it shows you if they've handled the legal aspects of other companies in your industry. Familiarity with your industry is a great advantage. Lawyers with experience in this area make it easier to communicate, and they also have specific advice and documents that you may need.
The other side to this question is to identify any conflicts of interest. If an attorney represents a competitor in your industry, they may not be the best choice for the job. There is a legal code of ethics regarding this. However, that doesn't mean that it's not a temptation to leak information.
Other Attributes to Consider
Obviously, contract, commercial, and legal services are the foremost skills of the lawyer you want. However, there are other aspects you may want to consider.
- Breach of contract lawyer
- Lawyers that specialize in breach of contract are lifesavers. They help sort out any violations in the contracts with your business, suppliers, or customers. If fault is on your end, they can help mitigate the damages. If customers or suppliers are to blame, the attorney can do a number of things, including communication with the other party, providing advice, and settling in or out of court.
- Transactional vs. Contentious
- To better serve your company, remember that there are two types of commercial lawyers. Transactional lawyers draft and review legal documents for business owners. Contentious lawyers resolve disputes with other parties. Finding a lawyer with experience in both areas is a possibility. However, finding separate attorneys for each aspect is a better idea for some businesses.
- Financing and Banking
- Financing and banking lawyers ensure that clients are protected against the risks of financial deals. This includes drafting legal documents that outline the lender and borrower's obligations. Without a lawyer to do this deal, many businesses end up with little or no recourse should they breach the contract.
- Dispute Resolution
- Before breach of contract, there's a way to get out of poor business dealings through dispute resolution. During dispute resolution, your attorney drafts documents to guide you through the process. They may also act as arbitrators or mediators.
- Tax Law
- Although you may not need a tax lawyer, a commercial lawyer with experience in taxes is a definite advantage. They may give advice on how to limit your tax liability. Even if they don't deal directly with taxes, it's good to have a legal voice outside of an accountant.
- Confidentiality Agreements
- Commercial Transaction Agreements
- SaaS Sales Agreements
- Release of Liability
- Consulting Agreements
- Indemnity Agreements
- Contractor Agreements
- Intellectual Property
- Licensing, Partnerships
- and much more
Costs will vary depending on the type and length of the contract, attorney rates, and desired turnaround time.
Some attorneys’ costs can be as low as $150 per hour for ongoing commercial contract agreements and negotiations.
For more specific work, such as Licensing Agreements, some attorneys have invoiced clients at $600, while various types of Privacy agreements and negotiations have been invoiced at $800.
Regardless, your agreement needs are unique, which is why you should request custom proposals from several attorneys on UpCounsel and choose the one best for your needs and budget.
What types of agreements should I be worried about as a small business owner?
A small business owner needs to think about a variety of agreements when it comes to the company. If the company has already been formed, you are probably looking to hire employees, in which case you’ll need employment agreements and employee handbooks. Confidentiality Agreements and documents having to do with protecting your intellectual property may be necessary as well.
Without knowing what stage of your business you are at, it can be hard to tell what agreements you may need. Thats why it would be best to speak with a qualified UpCounsel attorney who can lead you in the right direction.
I see many websites that have free legal documents. Do I still need an attorney to take a look at one I intend to use?
Yes, although many free legal documents are well-drafted, you would need to have them proofread by an attorney who can customize them to your specific needs. Many of the legal documents that you see online have very general provisions and will not protect you in certain circumstances that may only pertain to your situation. By discussing with your attorney your exact needs, he or she will be able to draft or review the contract to fit your personal needs.
Having hundreds of contract attorneys with many years of experience ready to help you on-demand through UpCounsel, your business can be confident that your legal agreements are protecting you to the fullest. From independent contractor agreements and letters of intent, to convertible notes, indemnity agreements, and much more - we’ve got you covered.