Welcome to the Kazi Law Firm! We are a boutique law firm steeped in Texas tradition personifying the warmth and congeniality consistent with southern hospitality. We believe in preserving integrity and professionalism with true Texan charm, staying true to our roots, while providing essential, affordable legal services to all. Located just north of Dallas, Texas in the rapidly growing suburb of Frisco; the Kazi Law Firm concentrates on contracts drafting and review, immigration law, will & estates, real estate law, landlord, tenant, mediation, and general business law needs.
Each adult, child, and business has been impacted by COVID-19 this year. No one could have predicted the upheaval that 2020 would bring for the world. Small businesses have suffered tremendously, with some having to shut their doors for good. However, with states across the country ending their lockdowns and reopening their economies, below are seven strategies your small business should utilize right now to prepare.
Identify Your Current Challenges and Make a Plan
Review your operations in order to identify where the risks and challenges are. Are your suppliers currently struggling? Are your customers hesitant to continue doing business with you? When challenges like these arise, the first and most important step is always to create a plan. Be prepared to change aspects of your business. For instance, you may need to identify alternative suppliers, change how you communicate and interact with customers, temporarily suspend parts of your operation, or make other changes.
Keep Your Customers Informed
Contact your customers to let them know how you plan on moving forward. Tell them about any changes you are making that will affect them.
For example, normally a hair stylist will not need to do much outreach in order to fill their schedule with appointments. However, now it may be necessary for a salon owner to email past clients and educate them on any social distancing and health and safety measures being put in place. The stylist may need to explain any local or state government requirements, such as taking temperatures and requiring face masks. Salon owners could ask patrons to wait in the car until their appointment time to prevent crowing in the waiting area or ask that children not accompany parents to the salon at this time.
Coordinate Your Response
It often helps to coordinate your response with others in your industry or community. Share your plans, tips, and best practices. If you plan on conducting more meetings remotely, then strategize with the meeting attendees on how you can do this effectively. If you operate in close proximity to other businesses, consider creating plans for cleaning common areas and managing any customers in those areas.
Maintain a Healthy Work Environment
Establish policies for social distancing and regular cleanings. Even if social distancing is not required by your local or state government, implementing precautionary measures will help instill confidence in your customers. Be sure to review your state’s rules on reopening your business as well as the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) resources. https://www.cdc.gov/
It may be necessary to temporarily downsize your operations. This could limit how much product you can make or the amount of services you can offer to customers. While not ideal, this might be required under the circumstances. For instance, requiring employees to work in staggered shifts or other flexible arrangements would help you reduce the number of employees on-site at any given time.
Also, just because you are restricted in some ways does not mean that you can’t expand in other ways. Consider incentivizing customers with deals, bulk discounts, gift cards, free delivery, or curbside pickup.
Protect Your Employees
If you are dependent on employees, then it is crucial that you keep them healthy. Educate your employees on what they should be doing to protect themselves and reduce transmission.
Send your sick employees home immediately. Actively communicate that employees are expected to notify their supervisor and stay home if they are showing any signs of sickness, especially if they are experiencing coughing, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fever, a sore throat, or a loss of taste or smell. Let them know that there will be no punishments if they cannot attend work and that they should not return to work until approved by a healthcare professional.
Employees who have sick family members at home should likewise not attend work, since they are at increased risk of becoming infected. Keep in mind that many people with the coronavirus display very mild symptoms or no symptoms at all. That’s why it’s completely acceptable to take extra precautions right now.
Implement or update your sick leave, family leave, paid time off, and other employee policies. Employees should know that there will not be punishments for taking time off. Our employee handbook will help you create and communicate your policies clearly.
Minimize Your Legal Risks
All companies need to incorporate certain legal documents into their standard practice. This is more important than ever right now. All LLCs should be protected with an LLC operating agreement, and all corporations should likewise maintain their corporate bylaws. These are required in many states. Even when not required by law, failing to have these foundational documents can easily expose you to unnecessary and dangerous liabilities.
Your company actions and decisions should duly be recorded in meeting minutes and corporate resolutions. This is required by most states in order to comply with corporate regulations.
Sole proprietorships and partnerships are typically advised to minimize their personal liability by forming an LLC or corporation. LLCs and corporations can also offer important tax advantages.
Once your business is registered and compliant, make sure that you start putting all your agreements in writing. This includes employment contracts, independent contractor agreements, and job offer letters.
Ask for Help
You’re not the only one struggling right now. People are organizing everywhere to support each other. If you are having trouble finding solutions to your problems, try doing some outreach to others in your community or industry who might be able to provide guidance. Many areas have a chamber of commerce, business associations, and community organizations that can be tremendous resources.
I built my law practice on the premise of being a life raft in a sea of sharks. I want to be an advocate for those that have been wronged and are too intimidated to seek help. My firm is here to explore your options, guide you through your legal journey, and give you that safe space to ask questions! There’s no such thing as a stupid question…Only the ones you don’t ask. So, my question to my clients is not “do you have any questions?” But rather “what questions do you have?”
As always, the Kazi Law Firm is standing by to help you in your time of need. Don’t hesitate to contact us today. We specialize in real estate law, landlord-tenant disputes, immigration, and wills & estate planning. Family is at the core of our practice. Just as we treat our family with respect and understanding, we treat yours. Come join the Kazi Law Firm family today!
Why swim alone in shark-infested waters when you don’t need to?