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Setting up a business involves complying with a range of legal requirements. Find out which ones apply to you and your new enterprise.

What particular regulations do specific types of business (such as a hotel, or a printer, or a taxi firm) need to follow? We explain some of the key legal issues to consider for 200 types of business.

While poor governance can bring serious legal consequences, the law can also protect business owners and managers and help to prevent conflict.

Whether you want to raise finance, join forces with someone else, buy or sell a business, it pays to be aware of the legal implications.

From pay, hours and time off to discipline, grievance and hiring and firing employees, find out about your legal responsibilities as an employer.

Marketing matters. Marketing drives sales for businesses of all sizes by ensuring that customers think of their brand when they want to buy.

Commercial disputes can prove time-consuming, stressful and expensive, but having robust legal agreements can help to prevent them from occurring.

Whether your business owns or rents premises, your legal liabilities can be substantial. Commercial property law is complex, but you can avoid common pitfalls.

With information and sound advice, living up to your legal responsibilities to safeguard your employees, customers and visitors need not be difficult or costly.

As information technology continues to evolve, legislation must also change. It affects everything from data protection and online selling to internet policies for employees.

Intellectual property (IP) isn't solely relevant to larger businesses or those involved in developing innovative new products: all products have IP.

Knowing how and when you plan to sell or relinquish control of your business can help you to make better decisions and achieve the best possible outcome.

From bereavement, wills, inheritance, separation and divorce to selling a house, personal injury and traffic offences, learn more about your personal legal rights.

Common visa application mistakes

The massive growth in ecommerce opportunities - particularly since the pandemic - means that business has become a global affair for many for the first time. This brings with it a whole host of legal and logistical hurdles you will have to navigate.

You may find yourself travelling overseas on business for the first time to meet suppliers and customers. While this can summon up images of glamorous international travel, the reality of often very different.

For a start, visa applications are notoriously tricky. While the paperwork itself may seem relatively straightforward, they are full of small details and requirements that could quite easily be overlooked - resulting in a rejected application. This can be particularly frustrating for those travelling to seek new business opportunities, new employment, or simply start anew.

With that in mind, here are some common mistakes that people make when applying for a visa - and how you can avoid them.

1. Applying for the wrong visa

There are multiple different visas available for those looking to take up residence in the UK alone - and each country has their own variations. As a result, you must do your research and make sure you apply for the correct visa. Applying for the wrong visa could mean you fail to meet the eligibility criteria.

The following UK visas tend to be the most common:

  • Family Visas (for those moving as a family)
  • Spousal Visa (for those married to a person with UK residency)
  • Travel Visa (for those heading out on extended travels)
  • An Employment Visa (for those offered work or sponsorship in the UK)
  • Indefinite Leave to Remain Visas (for those who have already lived in the UK for five years and would like to apply for settlement)
  • Student Visas (for those studying abroad) 
  • Innovator Visas (for established business owners)
  • a Sponsor Licence (for those who are hiring employees from other countries). 

2. Incomplete applications

There is no excuse for an incomplete application, especially for something as important as a visa. Work your way through your application carefully, ensuring you do not omit important details. A few blank spaces on your form could be the difference between obtaining your visa and getting a rejection. Make sure you have all of the relevant supporting documentation. Examples of supporting documentation include:

  • Passports & travel documentation 
  • Employment contracts
  • Education enrolment details (for student visas)
  • Residency documents (Housing contract etc.) 
  • Bank statements 
  • Proof of earnings

3. Not hiring a lawyer

Though an immigration lawyer may seem like an additional expense, they can provide you with peace of mind when it comes to applying for a visa. They are highly experienced and knowledgeable in their field, meaning they can help you decide which visa you need and guide you through the complicated application process. With their watchful eye guiding you, you are also less likely to make mistakes. You can find out more about working with Immigration Lawyers online or visit our office.

4. Underestimating the importance of a visa

Another mistake that happens all too often is that applicants simply underestimate just how important they are. For example, you may decide to delay applying as you're confident you will obtain one whenever you decide to apply. However, pushing your application can put you at risk. Your Visa could be rejected, putting your travel plans on hold, landing you in a difficult situation. Furthermore, underestimating the importance of the visa, may mean you're more likely to make a careless mistake when filling out forms and documentation.

Copyright 2021. Article made possible by Jeremy Bowler.

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