Legal Help for Startups
When founders are working to ensure their startups are working at maximum capacity and growth, they often don’t concern themselves with every legal regulation that exists governing startups. In between meetings, calls, product development, and other important tasks, few startup founders and even fewer high-level staff have the time or the ability to research every governing statute and take a strong interest in every legal transaction their startup is a part of. They face what they view to be larger problems such as getting to market, working to outfox their competitors, and be the first to be behind any technological innovation. No matter what your startup-related legal needs, we can help ensure you’re not only compliant but that you stay ahead of any potential legal issues.
Business Formation and Governance
Often not the strong suit for founders, business formation and governance sets the tone for the startup going forward through the establishment of the business entity itself through mundane items such as drafting certificate of incorporation, corporate bylaws, and applying for the Employer Identification Number (EIN) which is crucially important to the operation of the business. Without any of these, a business cannot function in the real world. However, startup founders should be laser focused on growth, not these tasks which is why our firm specializes in providing these services in addition to drafting and executing shareholder agreements, 83 (b) election for Founders, and stock purchase agreements with and without vesting to protect those who have sunk their heart and soul into the startup.
Any good startup runs on ideas, inspiration, and the ability to change know-how into actionable products which help build the foundation of and undergird the basis for the business. However, startups cannot run on dreams alone. That’s why our firm stands ready to help your business capitalize and obtain the financial resources it needs to succeed. From Term Sheets, SAFE notes, to convertible notes, we can structure any deal or offering to maximize value for you. When a founder thinks about what’s next for their business, our legal professionals guide you through an appropriately structured right of first refusal provision and co-sale agreement with management rights letters and investors rights letters. Our firm also helps create indemnification terms, private placement memorandums, subscription agreements, and investor questionnaires for any eventualities which may appear.
At the core of every start up is intellectual property. Whether it be an app, a new, more efficient way to do something, or another invention, intellectual property is at the heart of what we do in a global economy. Our firm can help guide you through the entire process from trademark registration or copyright registration to changing ownership of copyright and trademark. We’re ready to fight for you and your intellectual property from the moment you register it with the ability to draft and send compelling cease and desist letters. We can also help you learn how to leverage your intellectual property by drafting and executing the most favorable intellectual property assignment and licensing agreements in addition to invention assignment for both employees and founders. No matter your intellectual property concerns, we’re here to ensure your startup is not left unprotected.
By far one of the most important areas of any startup’s day to day business is how they hire, who they hire, and how reliable their hires are. For many, their employee base is a make or break situation when jobs are stretched out of necessity in the beginning and made more precise to help hone specialties as the months and years pass. Our legal professionals are here to help you establish how you wish to run your business from day one. For day to day employees, we provide an employment agreement and employee handbook governing the conduct and expectations of most employees in the business. For more specialized leaders in the startup, we can help provide an executive compensation and option plan to attract top flight talent. Our firm is also adept at creating independent contractor and consulting agreements for specialized talent that you wish to bring in so you’re not hamstrung offering benefits for short-term talent. Additionally, we provide full service support to you and your business by helping draft employee offer letters, severance agreements, employee benefit plans, and non-competition agreements. Employment is one of the most serious choices a business will make and you need experienced counselors to help ensure every hire moves your business forward.
Sometimes, startups will need to hire out for specialized services or other functions. When a startup or founder does, our legal team can help ensure your agreements are ironclad and protect you in every way possible. For some, this will include vendor agreements that outsource a function to a long-term collaborator or other special project. For others, these will include services agreements that intend to establish a relationship that will last for as long as the business exists. Our legal professionals are also able to create non-disclosure agreements and confidentiality agreements to protect your intellectual property rights and business secrets from use by competitors or by those same employees when it’s time to share with others what makes your business tick. Finally, our firm is mindful of how businesses need to share profits between investors, founders, executives and others and can craft a profit-sharing agreement that is not only equitable for all but helps move your business forward as well.
No matter your startup needs, our firm is able to help you. Our legal professionals are well versed in everything from incorporation to day to day management which makes our firm ideal members of your business team in addition to your legal team. Call us today to help move your startup forward and grow your business like you intended.