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The Most Essential Legal Documents for Startups & Small Businesses

Setting up your own small business is exciting, but organising the legal paperwork to support your new venture can be a daunting and time consuming job. There are many different types of legal documents you need to prepare depending on the type of business you run. Here’s an outline of the documents you must have to help your business stay compliant.

Once in place, you can focus on the most important job of all – running and growing the business. Regularly reviewing and updating your legal documents is important to avoid the risk of fines and penalties.

Business Law

Have documentation readily available that covers your business registration, tenancy agreements for any premises leased, data protection, intellectual property protection (vital for your business’s products and services) and contractual agreements. All of these will prove invaluable if a disagreement or dispute occurs.

  • Companies House information
  • HMRC papers
  • Data protection documents
  • Tenancy agreements
  • Details of financial agreements
  • Contracts for goods and services
  • Intellectual property

Tax

Being responsible for your business’ tax affairs means ensuring you complete your company accounts and any self assessment tax forms throughout the year. It also means keeping records for past and present tax returns. Having easy access to this information will help you provide accurate information to HMRC if required.

  • Bank statements
  • Invoices
  • Record of expenses
  • Past tax returns

Health and Safety

The UK Health and Safety Regulations are there to protect you, your employees and your customers. You will need to keep and update the following legal documents to comply with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE):

  • A health and safety regulations poster – displayed for employees if you have them.
  • A log book for incident and accident reports.
  • Risk assessments (in writing if the small business or startup employs five or more workers.)
  • A health and safety policy (in writing if your small business or startup employs five or more workers.)

Employment Law

It’s important to comply with employment law even if you start out with just a single employee. It’s a legal requirement that employees are protected by a statement of specific terms in an employment contract. Grievances, disciplinary and HR procedures need to be documented and available, particularly in the event of an employment tribunal.

Business Law

Keeping your legal documentation up to date and compliant will ensure you and your business is protected. As your business grows, so too will your accumulation of business records. In most cases businesses need to hold records for around six years. 

At Cube Records Management we’re here to help. We offer effective, reliable and affordable document management services. With over 25 years of extensive experience and investment-grade storage facility, we’re professionals in handling, managing and storing all your irreplaceable and confidential legal documents and records. We also offer secure document shredding and destruction upon request.

Visit our facility, speak to one of our specialists, or give us a call on 0800 027 2668 today.

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