5 Reasons Why You Need a Lawyer for Your Startup
Every startup faces business and legal issues, including picking a suitable entity, agreements among shareholders and founders, tax planning, intellectual property rights protection, employment contracts, compliance with specific laws, and agreement exclusivity provisions. Without an attorney, your startup may not be able to meet most of its legal requirements, resulting in business failure.
Finding the right business lawyers can be challenging, especially if you don’t have referrals. Consider reading reviews on trusted sites like Yelp, Google, Avvo, and LinkedIn. Read peer reviews to find out what colleagues say about your potential attorney. Pick a few lawyers, then interview them to see which one best suits your business needs. Discussed below are the reasons why you need a lawyer for your startup.
1. Intellectual property protection
Startups’ intellectual property may include trademarks, copyrights, and patents. Protecting them at the beginning of your business prevents others from using and benefiting from your property. You can seek protection for your inventions, business names, logos, and software. Your startup will require the services of reputable business lawyers to create an effective strategy for protecting and managing your intellectual property to avoid any financial or legal implications.
2. Identification of possible legal risks
An experienced startup attorney can identify possible legal concerns your business might face and help you prepare accordingly while taking the necessary measures to ensure these issues don’t potentially put your business at risk. To help minimize risks, your lawyer can help you insure against appropriate risks, include indemnification clauses as appropriate in contracts, review all your contracts before they’re signed, and advise you on employee interactions and employment decisions. They can also help you establish separate business entities to protect you should your corporate entities end up in debt or be sued.
3. Tax navigation
Tax issues can be challenging and complicated for most startups, and depending on your business entity, there are various taxation laws you must comply with. Neglecting your taxes or failure to comply as required may cripple your business. A startup lawyer can advise you to avoid future tax problems while ensuring compliance. They can also help you identify tax credits and deductions you can leverage to save your business some money.
4. Drawing legal documents
Legal drafting is one of the crucial tasks of a startup attorney. Your startup will need a lawyer to draft its foundation legal agreements that comply with relevant industry regulations. Some of the legal documents a business lawyer can draw for your startup are founders’ agreements, employment contracts, privacy policies, SaaS agreements, and service contracts. Startup attorneys can offer commercial lease guidance and help with employee stock options. They also help you review contracts to ensure no one takes advantage of you or you don’t find yourself in situations you aren’t aware you agreed to.
5. Picking a business entity
A lawyer can help you decide on the ownership structure ideal for your startup, depending on your type of business, financing, and the number of owners. Your business entity can be a sole proprietorship, corporation, LLC, or partnership. While some entrepreneurs make this decision alone, a business attorney helps you choose a structure that best suits you depending on liability, tax, ownership concerns, and more.
Hiring an attorney when starting your business can be very beneficial to its success and growth. Consider hiring a lawyer for your startup for these reasons and more.
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