Legal Audit

A legal audit is a way for management to identify, prioritise and resolve the important legal issues that a business faces. An audit will identify areas of legal non-compliance and inefficient processes and in doing so, reduce the risk of future legal liabilities. It will also assist in building a culture of compliance within the business and help avoid later distraction of management and financial loss should a legal issue arise.

Legal audits can cover many different areas:

  1. Corporate Structure:
    • Corporations Act compliance and obligations
    • Corporate structure
    • Board and company secretarial matters
    • Corporate governance policies
  2. Financial Issues:
    • Internal processes and controls
    • Taxation issues
    • Audit processes
    • Insurance coverage
  3. Operational Processes:
    • Standard contracts and agreements
    • Contract review policies and registers
    • Related party contracts or relationships not adequately documented
  4. Human Resources:
    • Employment agreements
    • Human resource policies
    • Industrial instrument and legislation compliance
    • OH&S policies and compliance
  5. Property:
    • Owned and leased properties
    • Environmental issues
  6. Legal and Compliance:
    • Existing or threatened litigation
    • Licences, permits and authorities
    • Protectable intellectual property
  7. Information Technology:
    • Websites
    • Software and hardware contracts
    • Privacy policy and document retention

Businesses that are growing rapidly often overlook essential areas of governance and compliance. A legal audit can identify those areas and allow a business to deal with issues before they become too large to rectify easily.