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Don't Let Legal Mistakes Trip Up Your Startup - Avoid These Common Pitfalls
Launching a startup is so exciting, but it's critical to get the legal foundations right from the beginning. As business lawyers, we've seen too many entrepreneurs run into issues that could have been easily avoided.
So we put together this checklist of legal risks for startups based on our experience. We want to help you dodge headaches down the road! Here are some of the biggies to keep in mind:
Pick the Right Business Structure
Your legal entity type really matters for taxation, liability protection, and securing investment. Often LLCs or S-corps sound tempting, but a C-corp may work better if seeking venture capital. Make sure to prevent personal liability for founders too!
Lock Up Your Brand Names and IP
Don't step on landmines with your business or product names and slogans. Do clearance searches and file trademarks and copyrights early to protect your assets! Also get agreements signed to ensure the company owns all IP created by founders and employees.
Follow Securities Laws for Fundraising
Any equity fundraising requires compliance with complex securities regulations. We can guide you on registering offers or finding exemptions to avoid getting in hot water with regulators or investors.
Pay and Treat Employees Right
Mistakes in payroll, overtime, classification, discrimination issues or independent contractor status can lead to big penalties. Have rock-solid HR practices and employment agreements in place from the start.
Craft Solid Customer and Supplier Contracts
Don't rely on handshakes - put clear customer and vendor agreements in writing to spell out rights, IP ownership, liability limits and more. Avoid lopsided terms too. Get advice!
These are just a few key legal areas that often trip up startups. Being smart on the business legal side from the beginning will help your venture thrive. Let our experienced attorneys guide you and avoid pitfalls! Give us a call anytime on our 24/7 answered phone number by visiting our website www.wheatlegal.com