If you’re an entrepreneur, you’re in control of your businesses and profits and know you want to be successful. Whether your goal is to be a millionaire or be in charge of a company that helps others, there are some legal tips you need to know. Here are five legal guidelines to ensure you get off to a fast start.

Hire an Attorney to Help Your Business Structure

Identifying your business structure should be one of your top priorities as an entrepreneur. Your business structure determines how you’ll pay taxes. Your business structure also influences what the IRS sees about your business. Choose the wrong business structure, and you may have trouble getting your business off the ground.

Hiring an attorney will help you get down the confusing road of business law. Remember that a limited-liability partnership is different from an LLC, which is different from a corporation, and you have to differentiate between the options. Think of who you’re getting into business with and why. Few aspects of business law are as confusing and essential to get right as business structure.

Treat Your Employees and Customers Fairly

Have you noticed how smoothly your businesses run when you treat your employees and customers with respect? Any situation can go from worse to better with respect, whether it concerns employee hours information or the policies and procedures of a business. The consequences could be long-lasting if you act out and mistreat someone on the job. Violating probation will get you longer than six months if you turn down an offer of six months in jail. Likewise, lawsuits are almost as bad as criminal charges if you mistreat customers and employees. Remember to treat your employees and customers like humans, with respect.

Businesses are complex organizations. Whether you have proprietary works, or a unique creation or brand, you must protect your intellectual property from infringing parties. That’s why all your legal information, from documents concerning meetings to an online privacy policy, collecting and keeping all of your legal information protected will keep your business running smoothly.

Are you running into trouble? Fear not. You can hire the best bookkeepers for the job if you run into trouble. Even an attorney can help you with some aspects concerning legal documents. As long as you take the time to be proactive, you won’t lose documents and information that are essential to your business.

Get Insurance Under All Circumstances

No matter how skilled a business owner you are, disaster can still find ways to strike your business. Whether it’s a fire, an accident, a burglary, or a hurricane, the problems that can go wrong with your company may see you struggling to manage the costs. Don’t you want to make sure you get reimbursed for the costs? Various types of insurance, from commercial property to fire insurance, are designed to protect your business.

If you think the risk is worthwhile as an entrepreneur, think again. A business that doesn’t have insurance could collapse at the first sign of danger or disaster. Whether you’ve been running your businesses for years or are just opening the doors, navigating the world of insurance requires concentration and persistence. Remember to think of what you’re fighting for as an entrepreneur.

You might be a skilled and knowledgeable businessperson, but there will be times ahead that will confuse and startle you. A business attorney’s job is to ensure you stay updated on all legal aspects of your business, from keeping up with Non-Disclosure Agreements to negotiating contracts; having an attorney to help you can reduce stress and increase feelings of confidence.

You can find a business law attorney in your area by searching online. Those in Seattle charge between $250 and $375. Depending on practice area and expertise, attorneys in other states may charge more or less.

You’ve come far as an entrepreneur, so there’s no time to look back. There’s no time like the present to ensure you understand everything there is to learn about running a business. Follow these five tips to keep your business up and running smoothly.