Whether you are just starting out with a few LPAs or have been operating for decades, running a successful aquaculture business involves navigating a host of legal issues. The aquaculture industry is highly regulated and requires compliance with numerous federal, state, and local laws and regulations in order to obtain the necessary permits and licenses to operate. Aquaculturists also have to negotiate contracts, work with financial institutions, deal with employment matters, and resolve disputes, among many other issues.
Forming the right partnership with legal counsel can be key to an aquaculturist’s success. The following is a list of just some of the legal issues an aquaculturist may want to seek the support of an attorney to deal with in order to run a successful business:
Formation and Planning
Legal counsel can provide guidance for all phases in the life of an aquaculture business, including entity formation, financing, contracts, taxation, and business succession.
Leasing and Permitting
The support of an experienced attorney can be critical when navigating through the leasing and permitting process in order to obtain approvals from local authorities, the Department of Marine Resources, the Department of Environmental Protection, and the Army Corp of Engineers, among other regulators. This is all the more true as public awareness of aquaculture increases and opponents continue their efforts to frustrate the industry’s growth.
Funding and Growth
Legal counsel can help aquaculture startups and emerging companies navigate through the complicated process of obtaining financing, securities offerings, strategic partnerships, and mergers and acquisitions.
Attracting and retaining quality employees can be difficult. Experienced attorneys can guide aquaculturists through the design and implementation of appropriate plans and programs that help promote loyalty between employee and employer.
Aquaculturists are often also inventors, creating and adopting gear and processes to meet their operational needs. Intellectual Property (IP) lawyers can advise businesses on the existence, ownership, protection, and exploitation of patent, trademark, copyright, and other intellectual property rights.
Disagreements are inevitable for all businesses. Whether it is a dispute over a contract, a problem with a supplier, or enforcement issues with governmental agencies, there are frequently problems in need of resolution that an experienced litigator can counsel aquaculturists through with a focus on a favorable and efficient outcome.
Case studies are authored by industry members at the request of The Maine Aquaculturist. Authors are selected based on experience and expertise in a key business aspect of aquaculture. See our About page for more information.