SMEs increasingly struggling with ‘common legal issues’, study suggests

SMEs increasingly struggling with ‘common legal issues’, study suggests

A new study has found that UK small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are having to deal with ‘common legal issues on a regular basis.

Insurance company DAS quizzed 250 small businesses in order to determine whether they were having trouble resolving common legal issues such as recovering money from debtors, or complying with their tax, health and safety and other obligations.

The survey found that all 250 firms had experienced ‘at least one’ of these common issues within the past 12 months.

Recovering late payments was cited as the top issue encountered by UK SMEs on a regular basis, followed closely by tax issues and contract-related complications.

SMEs also told the insurer’s Market Barometers survey that over the past 12 months, they had struggled with pensions, health and safety and start-up business legal administration.

The research also found that SMEs appeared to be underestimating the likelihood that they would encounter further legal issues in the near future.

It found that only five per cent of respondents thought that their organisation would find itself facing a greater number of legal issues or risks within the next two years.

This is despite the fact that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will be phased in midway through next year, affecting businesses of all shapes and sizes all across the country.