Windsor-Essex County Business Law Lawyers & Experts
Business law is a complex area of law that encompasses several subjects, including corporate and commercial matters, contracts, financing, and real estate. An experienced business lawyer can provide legal guidance with a thorough, multi-faceted approach that supports an enterprise’s growth and reduces liability.
Willis Business Law was founded by the sole corporate and commercial law specialist in the Windsor-Essex area, William J. Willis. Backed by William’s practical approach to the law and supported by the region’s dynamic business community, the firm has become one of the area’s most reputable and fastest-growing business law firms.
Willis Business Law works with all types of stakeholders in organizations of any size, from small entrepreneurial firms to large private and public sector institutions. By providing clients with forward-thinking, timely business law services, the firm has established a reputation for integrity and has built lasting relationships with clients throughout Southwestern Ontario.
Creating a Business in Canada
Willis Business Law is passionate about helping entrepreneurs and new ventures thrive in the Canadian business landscape. The firm’s collaborative business lawyers help new businesses navigate the myriad of legal, corporate, tax, and regulatory compliance requirements involved in creating a business in Canada. The firm’s business law team assists clients at every stage, from initial research to financing to setting up corporate strategies that support their growth.
Commercial Real Estate
The commercial real estate lawyers at Willis Business Law are experienced in transactions of all sizes and levels of complexity and assist a variety of clients, including municipalities, educational institutions, and other public bodies. The firm’s proficiency in Ontario’s real estate law enables it to handle all aspects of commercial property investments, from initial structuring and acquisition through development, financing, management, and disposition.
Willis Business Law provides robust, effective real estate solutions and advises clients on all related financial, insurance, and risk management issues.
No matter the size of the venture, businesses rely on numerous agreements throughout their development, growth, and daily operations. Willis Business Law provides top-tier representation to businesses and institutions in any business contract negotiations, including those relating to:
- Shareholder agreements;
- Partnership agreements;
- Merger & Acquisition (M&A) contracts;
- Lease agreements;
- Executive employment agreements;
- Joint venture agreements;
- Family business trusts;
- Tax and financial structure agreements;
- Requests for Proposal and other tendering contracts;
- Real estate contracts;
- Licencing agreements; and
- Collective bargaining agreements.
Corporate Minute Book Compliance
Keeping a current, detailed minute book is not only a business best practice but is required by statute. An organized minute book protects a corporation and its officers and directors from liability and demonstrates the business’ dedication to transparency and accountability.
Willis Business Law conducts proactive, thorough reviews of clients’ corporate minute books to ensure they are up-to-date, thereby reducing the company’s vulnerability to legal consequences. The firm also provides timely advice to corporations facing audits or fines for failing to keep their minute book compliant with federal and provincial business and tax laws.
Willis Business Law helps businesses navigate the critical intersection of business law, regulation, policy, and politics. The firm designs and implements decision-making and accountability frameworks to ensure clients employ effective governance practices that comply with corporate governance laws, funding obligations, and public expectations. The experienced lawyers of Willis Business Law also help public institutions understand and implement legal requirements pertaining to their operations.
The comprehensive corporate governance services provided by Willis Business Law include the following:
- Reviewing the current status of the organization and its strategic goals and preparing a long-term corporate structuring plan designed to help achieve those strategic goals;
- Preparing and obtaining articles of incorporation and related amendments;
- Drafting and amending corporate by-laws;
- Assisting with charitable registrations;
- Training boards, committees, management, and leadership about their legal and fiduciary obligations;
- Responding to and negotiating with provincial and national regulators and other enforcement agencies; and
- Conducting internal investigations of potential compliance-related issues.
Creation of Business Structures
The skilled team at Willis Business Law has a comprehensive knowledge of Ontario business structures and provides reliable advice to clients, whether they are embarking on a new venture or growing an established business. The firm learns each client’s needs to determine the structure that best positions their business enterprise for success.
Willis Business Law assists clients with any type of business formation, including corporations, partnerships, joint ventures, and family business trusts. The firm also negotiates and prepares any corollary contracts, including shareholder and partnership agreements, and agreements required to establish tax-efficient business structures.
Through its standing as a reputable, innovative business law firm, Willis Business Law has developed long-lasting relationships with financial institutions throughout Windsor-Essex County. The firm advises borrowers and lenders on debt financing matters, including loans, mortgages, inter-creditor agreements, and the establishment of complex credit facilities.
The lawyers at Willis Business Law understand the complexities of commercial leases and have experience negotiating commercially acceptable terms for both landlords and tenants. The firm’s knowledgeable team ensures that lease agreements encompass all nuances of a client’s particular needs and protect their businesses from risk.
Willis Business Law assists clients with the structuring, negotiation, drafting, documentation, and execution of a variety of commercial lease agreements, including:
- Storage or industrial leases;
- Office and retail space leases; and
- Ground leases.
Mergers, Acquisitions & Corporate Restructuring
Willis Business Law has represented parties in every type of business transaction involving a change in structure or control. The firm’s business lawyers create pragmatic and proactive legal solutions to ensure clients’ compliance with all applicable corporate laws and regulatory requirements.
The business law group at Willis Business Law represents buyers, sellers, and acquisition targets in all types of private and public mergers and acquisitions, including:
- Corporate restructurings and reorganizations; and
- Asset and share sales.
The dynamic team of non-profit lawyers at Willis Business Law provides a broad range of legal services to charities, not-for-profit organizations, and donors, including:
- Social agencies; and
- Other government and non-government organizations.
The firm provides reliable advice and innovative legal strategies to directors, trustees, officers, and all levels of management within non-profit institutions, as well as the following services:
- Incorporating non-share capital corporations;
- Preparing charitable registration applications;
- Structuring governance solutions for complex charitable and not-for-profit organizations;
- Assisting clients with planning giving, endowments, fundraising, and charitable sponsorships;
- Advising on governance, conflict of issues, ethics, and officer and director liability issues; and
- Negotiating and drafting sponsorship, borrowing, financing, funding, licensing, and other agreements.
Privacy breaches expose businesses and individuals to significant legal liability, reputational damage, and financial loss. Willis Business Law helps private and public sector clients navigate the complicated intersection of provincial and federal privacy laws to manage risks appropriately.
Willis Business Law provides a broad range of privacy-related services to private businesses, public sector and government institutions that collect, use and disclose individuals’ personal information, including:
- Designing privacy management programs to assist organizations to comply with various privacy laws, including:
- The Personal Information and Protection of Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) of Canada;
- The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) of Ontario;
- The Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA) of Ontario; and
- The Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004 (PHIPA) of Ontario;
- Educating boards, senior management, and staff about privacy compliance and the implementation of related policies;
- Incorporating privacy and security requirements into contractual agreements;
- Drafting consent forms for the collection, use, and disclosure of personal information;
- Assistance with privacy breach response; and
- Assistance with freedom of information and access requests.
The firm’s privacy law group also represents and advises clients who wish to obtain access to their own personal information or those whom they represent.
Willis Business Law has extensive experience with procurement in both the public and private sectors. The firm’s procurement lawyers assist clients across a wide range of sectors on all aspects of procurement, including:
- Designing procurement systems;
- Drafting procurement policies and assisting with their implementation, including staff training;
- Drafting template solicitations (for example, negotiated requests for proposal and more traditional requests for tender);
- Administering the procurement process (for example, submission compliance review);
- Conducting debriefing sessions; and
- Managing related contract disputes.
Selling Products & Services in Canada
Selling an international product or service in Canada can create innovative business opportunities and support local economies. Willis Business Law helps new businesses navigate the myriad of provincial and federal legal, tax, and regulatory considerations involved in selling products and services in Canada. The firm’s skilled business law group helps entrepreneurs avoid operational disruptions and costly financial penalties and helps establish and create effective business structures.
Contact Willis Business Law in Windsor-Essex for Comprehensive, Expert Business Law Services
Willis Business Law provides quality, innovative business law solutions to private and public institutions across the Windsor-Essex region. By combining a community-driven approach with a big-firm level of professionalism, the firm builds long-term relationships with its clients and is dedicated to their success and profitability. Located in the heart of the City of Windsor, Willis Business Law provides accessible, dynamic service to clients throughout Windsor-Essex and the surrounding communities. To speak with a knowledgeable business lawyer or schedule a confidential consultation, please call 519-945-5470 or reach out online.