WHY YOU NEED AN ATTORNEY:
Here’s the big picture: Whether you are starting a business or operating an existing one, if you’re serious about being successful, you need to have an attorney looking out for your best interests.
At any stage of your business, you want to ensure that your business and marketing plan have a chance to blossom. You want to maximize your chances of success, so you don’t want to walk directly into a lawsuit. Most notably, in today’s digital world, your intellectual property may be your most valuable asset, so you want to protect it. It goes without saying that you want to form the most appropriate business entity (LLC, LLP, LP, corporation) for your business, legal, tax and accounting needs. You will also need to know how to operate the business so as to avoid losing the protection of the entity you’ve chosen. One of the most important and often overlooked areas of planning involves the agreement that governs the entity. These usually consist of the bylaws, operating agreement and partnership agreement. These documents are ultra important because they provide for all aspects of the business’s operations, including management and operations, ownership, liabilities, restrictions on transferring interests, income tax treatment, allocations of profits and losses among owners, and each partner’s rights and obligations. I’m sure your business will involve leveraging the strengths of key players or teammates to achieve your vision. It’s a good idea to memorialize the businesses’ goals, operational parameters and everyone’s rights and responsibilities so everyone starts and remains on the same page. You’ll need agreements that prevent partners from soliciting, competing, and disclosing company confidences. Ultimately, the business will face new concerns, which include employees, contracts and litigation.
• Intellectual Property
• Formation and operation
• Governing Documents
• Partnership Agreements
• Shareholder Agreements
• Agreements preventing competition and solicitation, preserving confidentiality
• Employee Agreements
You may want to form a business entity for your start-up (startup) for reasons relating to raising money, limiting personal liability of owners, ensuring centralized management, continuing beyond the life of the owners, for tax or accounting reasons or for estate and gift tax planning reasons. You may simply want to convert your existing business into a more appropriate entity. A general partnership and sole proprietorship are not business entities. Other types of business entities include, but are not limited to, limited liability company (LLC), limited partnership (LP), limited liability partnership (LLP), limited liability limited partnership (LLLP), corporation, s-corporation (also known as sub-chapter s corporations) and trusts. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages relating to business, tax, accounting and operations, so you need to understand your alternatives so you can choose the entity that is a better fit for your business. Contact a business planning attorney to ensure that you form or convert to the most appropriate business entity to satisfy your needs.