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  • #978601
    endlessink
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    Hi,
    We are a few weeks away from launching (or should I say promoting, since it is officially on google) our website. We will be selling products online, with the view of opening a store in 2013. I have a few questions regarding what I should do about the money/legal side of things so here goes…

    1. Should I be seeing an accountant or a solicitor or a bookkeeper? I have been learning Quickbooks so I can keep track of our money, and am in the application process of getting bank account in business name. I have registered the business name, got domain name, and am hoping to register our brand name as a trademark soon. What other things would an accountant /solictor help with? I feel as though I should see one, but am unsure of what they would be helping with??

    2. Insurances. Since it is a product and a service would I only get public liability?

    #1108252
    JacquiPryor
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    Hi Endlesslink

    You said you have registered business name and domain name. If not already done you will also need an ABN, and depending on what your turnover is expected to be you may also need to register for GST.

    An accountant or solicitor should be able to advise on whether a ‘business name’ is the right structure for you to begin with. If you have registered your business name in your own name this makes you a sole trader, which means that you remain the legal entity for your business. A business name is not an entity, it’s more like an alias for whoever is operating the business. Depending on your personal circumstances a different structure might be better for you and an accountant/solicitor should be able to give you this advice.

    An accountant will also be able to help you set up Quickbooks properly – if you are not sure on how to do this yourself. Make sure all of your accounts are correctly created etc. If you are not comfortable with the book work side of things just yet and are registered for GST then a book-keeper or accountant will be able to help complete and lodge your BAS for you.

    There is a separate thread relating to Insurance on this forum so you may find some further help for your second question there. All the best with your new business :)

    #1108253
    Kennethti
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    Well off the top of my head, you should see an accountant for:

    1. Business Structure
    2. Company Registration / Secretarial
    3. Filing your BAS regularly
    4. Tax Minimisation strategies both for personal and for corporate

    And you should see a lawyer for:

    1. Shareholders / Partnership agreement if more than 1 partner
    2. Business succession planning
    3. Online terms and conditions
    4. Compliance with Privacy Laws and Australian Consumer Law
    5. Dealing with creditors
    6. General risk minimisation strategies
    7. Your lease

    You can see either a lawyer or a trade mark attorney for:

    1. Trade Marks

    #1108254
    SavvySME
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    I can’t add much value on the legal side, but there are other alternatives to quickbooks if you care to look. I know a lot of businesses are starting to use Xero as it’s cloud based. It may be easier to work with as you grow and allows you more flexibility.

    I’m also curious as to see how much lawyers would cost to help set up a business like that for those that are thinking of starting a similar type of business and giving them an idea of how much they should budget for in terms of legal fees.

    Thanks for reading,

    Wendy

    #1108255
    kathiemt
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    If you’re in business then you should have an Accountant. They will be able to advise what you need to do and what you should or shouldn’t have. They may also be able to refer you to a solicitor to suit your needs.

    #1108256
    JacquiPryor
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    SavvySME, post: 120262 wrote:
    I can’t add much value on the legal side, but there are other alternatives to quickbooks if you care to look. I know a lot of businesses are starting to use Xero as it’s cloud based. It may be easier to work with as you grow and allows you more flexibility.

    I’m also curious as to see how much lawyers would cost to help set up a business like that for those that are thinking of starting a similar type of business and giving them an idea of how much they should budget for in terms of legal fees.

    Thanks for reading,

    Wendy

    Hi Wendy – legal fees will be dependent on the type of structure chosen. For a lawyer to help ‘set up’ where a business name is involved will be less than a Trust with corporate trustee scenario. Costs would also be different in a ‘physical shop’ scenario (ie. lease review/advice) than online only from home etc. I have had past quotes to register companies (e.g. pty ltd) through accountants or solicitors of around $1200.00 and roughly double (ish) that for Trust with corporate trustee. Most will help you understand what’s right for your situation within that quote.

    In short – the costs will likely vary based on complexity of the job and therefore time involved. Hopefully a lawyer in this space will be along shortly to confirm the range of what those costs may be.

    There’s a lot of home-work you can do yourself obviously, including familiarising yourself with your local council regulations for business operations and ATO information. In some cases, you might be able to pay a lawyer for a couple of hours consultation and then attend to some of the ‘work’ yourself, or via a corporate services provider or similar to keep legal fees a little lower.

    Hope that helps (a little bit until someone else is along to answer more definitively!)

    #1108257
    endlessink
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    Thank you all for your replies :) Very helpful.

    #1108258
    Chris – Marketing
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    All the best with your new venture. Exciting days ahead. QB is a great tool used correctly. Make sure you take the time and enter all items, quotes, customers as well as your day to day finacials. This information will be the key to your success.

    Chris Poulios
    http://www.satisfaction-marketing.com.au
    http://www.webthreads.com.au (e-commerce from $150.00 July Special)

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