Small Business Services
Most Americans work for small businesses, not the large headliners such as Intel or Walmart. As a small business, you usually cannot afford to have an attorney on staff to lead you through all the legal issues and questions you face on a routine basis. However, you also cannot afford to ignore these same legal issues.
Stevens & Legal is here to help Westside businesses with these problems. We are also here to help prevent problems with our liability assessments and other services.
Do you need to create a limited liability company (LLC) or perhaps a corporation to protect your personal assets? Do you know the difference between them and the pros and cons of each? Do you have an operating agreement to manage your LLC, and do you even need one?
If not, Stevens & Legal can help you form your business entity and register it for you. We can also counsel you on what you need to do to make sure you keep the advantages of an LLC or corporation, including not mixing assets. Our firm can also help in selecting a name from a branding or potential trademark aspect, as the Secretary of State only cares that the name not basically be the same name as an existing registration in Oregon. There are a few other restrictions as well, such as names related to financial institutions (“banc,” “bancorp,” “bank,” “banker,” “banking,” “savings,” “safe deposit,” “trust,” “trustee,” “building and loan” or their equivalents in a language other than English, or a similar word or words in English or an equivalent in a language other than English, implying a business primarily engaged in the lending of money, underwriting or sale of financial products, acting as a depository institution, acting as a financial planner, financial adviser or acting as a loan broker), but those rarely come up.
For a simple Oregon LLC registration with no legal review or operating agreement, we charge $200 (which includes the state's $100 filing fee), which includes an employer tax ID from the IRS (EIN). Our turn around in usually one business day, as we already have an account with the state and know how to complete it quickly. As a bonus, if you use Stevens & Legal to complete your registration, we will serve as your registered agent for one year, free of charge (base package).
If you need an operating agreement, we offer a very flexible one for a flat $100. It is fully customize-able for your firm, but fits most company's needs with only few blanks to fill in.
For those who want a corporation (or a professional corporation), the base price is $250 (which includes the $100 filing fee) and includes all of the items an LLC has with obtaining an EIN and serving as your registered agent for a year. It also includes a basic set of bylaws and a meeting minutes for your meeting to adopt the bylaws and elect officers. However, most people do not need a corporation, as an LLC is a better option. Corporations are better suited for those expecting multiple investors, especially passive investors.
Stevens & Legal can also take care of registering your out-of-state entity. This requires an application for authority to be filed, which the state charges $275 for that privilege, with our fee of $75 for a total of $350. This then includes one-year as your registered agent. This price does not include any extra costs that may be required to show the State of Oregon your entity is in good standing. Many states post that information online for the Oregon Sec. of State to easily confirm, but some do not. For example, Delaware does not post that information, thus it costs $10 to obtain that information to be able to provide it to Oregon.
Of course you can do all of these on your own, but it will likely take you longer. Plus, this is not what you do on a regular basis, so you may not get it right. Do you want to take that chance?
Once you have your company, you should be thinking about your brand and how to protect it. Actually, you should think about that when you form your company as to avoid costly re-branding if it turns out someone is already using that name or a similar one. We can assist with picking a brand or with the trademark registration, or both. We charge a flat $550 for a simple, one classification mark, which includes the USPTO's filing fee of $250.
For only $40 per year for our base package, or $70 per year for our deluxe package (terms and conditions apply to both packages), we will serve as your registered agent for your business. This helps to protect your privacy, which is harder and harder to do each year. Plus, having a law firm listed as your register agent adds an air of sophistication to your company, in that you can afford a law firm.
The world is filled with pitfalls for companies. For instance, if you hire that person and they cause an accident while driving for your business, guess what, you will likely be responsible for the accident.
Let our firm review your operations and look for liability issues. This includes looking at workplace safety and how safe your store or property is for customers. One bonus advantage of this, is since an attorney is doing the review, everything remains confidential and is protected as privileged.
Reviews start at a flat $250.
Have a key employee you want to make sure you can keep and are thinking about going with a written employment contract? Looking to add a new supplier and they give you a 20-page contract that looks like it is written in Greek?
Stevens & Legal can review those contracts for an hourly rate to help you understand what you are agree to, and give you advice on any changes to help protect your company. We can even draft a contract for you. Some reviews can be completed on a fixed fee as well to provide cost certainty.
Employee handbooks can help to protect your business. If you do not have rules, your employees can claim there was no rule. But if you have these rules in writing, and have the employees sign off on reading them, then you can better protect your business when something goes wrong.
Our firm can customize a handbook for your firm, or review any you have to ensure it covers as many issues as possible.
Do you just need some advice or a sounding board? Well, the advantage of using an attorney is the confidentiality that is afforded those conversations. Throw in the legal training and experience, and top that with real-world experience, and Stevens & Legal can help you with a wide-range of issues from copyrights and trademarks to employee situations.