Understand business laws and legal compliances to avoid trouble, SMEs told

Understand business laws and legal compliances to avoid trouble, SMEs told

The key to being a successful entrepreneur is planning, and this includes understanding the legal components of a business,  Eugene Botha, legal associate at Sirdar South Africa, said.

Careful planning of policies will ensure that business owners avoid costly legal problems in the future, he added.

Another expert, Lionel Billings, head of consulting services of Business Partners Limited, said it was necessary to be familiar with important Acts and commercial law pertaining to business practice, as it is easy for a business owner to break the law without even realising it.

“It is the responsibility of the business owner as director and shareholder to know which Acts and laws are relevant to them,” Billings said.

“It is also easier for businesses to operate within the business landscape as government and clients are more likely to partner with SMEs which are compliant.”

Furthermore, Botha said the law should also be used as a tool to successful planning for businesses.

“Entrepreneurs need to take risks in order to succeed in business, and if risks are taken without the required knowledge and correct management these risks are effectively a gamble,é he explained.

“Every business has legal requirements which need to be planned for effectively and risks which need to be covered.”

The following are, among others, the pertinent Acts which business owners should familiarise themselves:
•    Companies Act
•    Consumer Protection Act
•    National Credit Act
•    Protection of Private Information Act
•    Promotion of Access to Information Act
•    Broad-based BEE Bill
•    Employment Equity Act

“These Acts will impact a business on a regular basis, and it is therefore necessary for business owners to understand them in order to avoid legal implications and costly law suits,” Botha said, adding that staff also needed to be trained to know and understand these laws.

Image: Seacoast Law

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