Legal Blog

Raising the Bar: 7 Hidden Threats You Need to Protect Your Small Business Against

For many small business owners, success amounts to mere survival. In fact, according to the SBA, about half of all new establishments fail within five years. Chances are you already know many of the reasons why: limited market opportunities, ruthless competition, operational difficulties, poor growth and revenue, and debt—to name a few. But for every obvious risk, there’s another hidden danger lurking behind the scenes. Here are several lesser-known legal and operational perils threatening your business’s survival:

Cybersecurity Risks

While high-profile data breaches affecting large corporations such as Target and eBay are the ones that generate headlines, small-sized businesses are just as—if not more—vulnerable to cyber attacks and their related legal matters. Read why cybersecurity and government contracting attorney Edward Tolchin recommends that every business seek legal help before tackling a cybersecurity issue.

Former Employees Turned Competitors

When an employee leaves your company, what steps can you take to ensure that person does not walk away with valuable trade secrets, or establish a competing business down the street? Offit Kurman Labor & Employment Chair Howard Kurman has a primer on using non-compete and non-disclosure agreements to protect your business’s assets.

Partnership Disputes

No business relationship—no matter how intimate—is perfect. A handshake forms a poor legal basis and too often, a “gentleman’s agreements” turn out to be anything but gentlemanly, argues President and Managing Principal of Legal Affairs Timothy Lynch in his article on using partnership agreements to resolve disputes.

Poorly Drafted Agreements

Writing an extensive contract? Pay close attention to the details, warns commercial litigator Brian Loffredo, in his analysis of a recent case in which a franchisee won a rare upper hand against its franchisor—thanks to a simple “choice of words” error.

Inadequate Asset Protection

Patent litigation, insurance policy gaps, and too much cash on hand are just a few examples of the many challenges to your business’s assets. Estate planning attorney and firm co-founder Maurice Offit gives practical advice on protecting what matters most to your company, in his look at three asset safeguarding strategies.

Lack of Outside Perspective

No matter how big or small, every business can use the help of independent advisors to minimize organizational inefficiencies and gain a competitive advantage. Download our free report on establishing and making the most of your advisory board. If you are facing threats to your business or person and would like to discuss your business and legal options, Offit Kurman can help. An experienced legal professional can help guide you through the many hurdles business owners face. Click here to get in touch with an attorney.



Offit Kurman is one of the fastest-growing, full-service law firms in the Mid-Atlantic region. With over 135 attorneys offering a comprehensive range of services in virtually every legal category, the firm is well positioned to meet the needs of dynamic businesses and the people who own and operate them. Our eleven offices serve individual and corporate clients in the Virginia, Washington, DC, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York City. At Offit Kurman, we are our clients’ most trusted legal advisors, professionals who help maximize and protect business value and personal wealth. In every interaction, we consistently maintain our clients’ confidence by remaining focused on furthering their objectives and achieving their goals in an efficient manner. Trust, knowledge, confidence—in a partner, that’s perfect.

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