Small Business Health Check

Trading Entity

Some of the matters that may need attention are as follows:

  • Sole trader
  • Partnership: Do you have a partnership agreement? When was the agreement last updated?
  • Company: Is the Constitution up-to-date? Do you understand your director’s liabilities?
  • Trust: When was the Trust Deed last updated?
  • Joint Venture: When was the agreement last updated?
  • Other - such as Unit Trust Arrangement or Partnership of Trusts.

Agreements

  • Whether business arrangements are evidenced by written agreements?
  • Where are the written agreements located?
  • When were the agreements last reviewed?
  • Is there an exit plan in case of a change in circumstances?
  • Is there a succession plan for your retirement?

Leases/Property

  • Are your premises rented or leased and in whose name?
  • Do you have a written lease?
  • Do you have any options if you want to further a term?
  • When does your lease expire?
  • Where are the lease documents located?
  • Have you provided personal guarantees, bank guarantees or bond?
  • Are you a lessor? If so, do you know:
    • Whether you are obliged to provide a Lessor Disclosure Statement?
    • When your rent reviews are?
    • How the rent is to be reviewed?
    • What your obligations are in relation to outgoings?
    • What your obligations are in the event of a proposed assignment by the lessee?
    • What are your obligations in relation to Building and Safety Checks?

Superannuation

  • Do you have a superannuation fund?
  • Do you know the location of the trust deeds?
  • Who is the trustee?
  • Who are the members?
  • Is it a self-managed fund?
  • Have you considered using a self-managed fund to acquire property?

Equipment Leases

  • Do you have any leases for your plant or equipment?
  • Do you know where these documents are located?
  • Do you know when they expire?
  • Is there a residual payment? If so, can this residual be rolled over?
  • Have you provided any guarantees?
  • Can you buy the equipment at the end of the lease term?
  • Are you a hirer or lessor? If so, have you considered the impact of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth)?

Insurance Policies

  • Do you have insurance cover? If so, do you know what policies you have?
  • Do you know what the policies cover and if they are adequate to protect your business?
  • Have you had the policies checked against the insurance requirements contained in any lease document?
  • If necessary, have you had the interests of third parties taken into consideration?
  • Have you considered life insurance to protect the equity of a deceased director’s family?
  • Have you considered income protection insurance?
  • Have all relevant matters been disclosed to the insurer?

Risk Management

  • Do you have product liability insurance?
  • Do you have public liability insurance?
  • Do you have professional indemnity insurance?
  • Do you handle personal information? If so, do you have a privacy policy? Do you seek and obtain
  • necessary consents and disclosures?
  • Do you regularly review your advertising and promotional material to ensure that these do not mislead or deceive customers?

Asset Protection

  • Is your business at high risk of litigation?
  • If you have partners, do you have a partnership or shareholders agreement?
  • Does your partnership agreement adequately deal with succession issues and buyouts?
  • Do you have restraints of trade and confidentiality agreements?

Trade Creditors and Debtors

  • Have you provided personal guarantees for trade accounts?
  • Do you request personal guarantees from debtors on trade accounts?
  • Do you provide product warranties?
  • Do you have a standard agency agreement?
  • Have you reviewed any retention of title clauses or any other security which is now covered by the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth)?
  • Do you have any existing terms for payment of your invoice?
  • Do you have any existing debt collection procedure?

Intellectual Property

  • Do you have any trademarks, patents, design registration or copyright disclaimers?
  • Have you secured your web name or URL?
  • Is the content of your website copyright protected?
  • Are your logos trademarked?
  • If you have a business name, is it registered?
  • Does your business produce ideas, artwork, music or other creative material? If so, have you considered the use of Confidentiality Agreements, Licence Agreements or Agreements for the Assignment of Copyright?
  • Do you need to protect your intellectual property rights used in social media?

Employment Matters

  • Have your employment contracts been recently reviewed?
  • Do your employment contracts comply with the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth)?
  • Are you familiar with the relevant employee awards or enterprise agreements?
  • Do you have in place anti-discrimination, grievances and harassment policies and procedures?
  • Do you know your obligations pursuant to the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 (Vic)?
  • Are you liable to pay payroll tax or fringe benefits tax?