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Los Angeles Startup Lawyers
Legal Tips and Information
Starting a company comes with many legal challenges. Los Angeles startup lawyers understand the intricacies of protecting intellectual property, contract negotiation, and forming the ownership entity.
When launching a new business, it’s never too soon to find an experienced startup lawyer in LA that has the tools and knowledge to see a business through the toughest early challenges.
Why Hire a Startup Lawyer?
Lawyers don’t produce products and they don’t sell anything. Yet even the leanest startup company requires their services if they want to reach their goals, push boundaries, and stay within the confines of the law. A great startup attorney will help a new company manage risk and plan for smart growth while providing a strategic long-term value proposition.
How to Manage Needs Without Hiring In-House Counsel
There is a tipping point where paying attorneys by the hour or by the job is a more expensive than bringing in a full-time in-house lawyer for every new company. While having general counsel on call and 100% devoted to the needs of their company may seem like a dream come true, it’s important to understand that this option isn’t normally the most efficient way for a startup to get legal help.
Startup founders have a natural instinct to surround themselves with great advisors and experienced experts. A business has diverse needs during the building stages. Hiring legal help on as-needed basis provides access to experts that have a great deal of experience in certain areas of business law.
Startup attorneys that make themselves available on an as-needed basis often work with more than one new business at a time. They can keep their fees reasonable and are normally willing to be flexible to the needs of their clients. Choosing a lawyer that has a compatible personality and specialties that match the needs of the business is a worthy goal for the startup founders.
Specialties Offered by Los Angeles Attorneys Specializing in Startup Legal
Every geographic area experiences trends in business and LA is no exception. The leisure and hospitality industry is responsible for employing over 488,000 people and that number increases each year.
The Los Angeles/Long Beach area is the largest port complex in the United States and two-way trade handled at the LA Customs District is over $415 billion. LA has the 20th largest economy in the world.
Lawyers in this area have expertise and experience handling the unique needs of LA’s emerging businesses. Here are some of the specialized services offered by Los Angeles startup lawyers:
- Representation for independent filmmakers, production companies, and television producers
- Multi-lingual domestic corporate law consultation services
- Cyberspace law
- Internet-based business development
- Digital entertainment law
- Content licensing
- Technology services law
- Intellectual property transactions
- Employment regulations
- Securities compliance and governance
- International law
- Privacy and confidentiality laws
- Contract review
- Forming LLC’s
- Private placements and venture capital
- Software and technology licensing
- Business litigation
- Drafting contracts
- Stockholder agreements
In a city with over 113 accredited universities and colleges including UCLA, Pepperdine University, and Loyola Marymount University, new businesses come on the scene every day.
Startup lawyers in LA understand this ever-changing landscape and are poised to assist recent graduates, people in the process of developing their ideas, and even new startups ready for explosive growth in reaching their goals.
What Services Will a Startup Lawyer Provide?
While each attorney will have their own specific strengths and specialties, there are a few situations that startup attorneys in Los Angeles deal with on a day-to-day basis:
Creating and executing founder’s agreements
Forming an agreement between founders regarding decision making responsibilities, ownership, and operating procedures necessary components of a bare-bones founder’s agreement. This type of documentation helps a new company avoid surprises that can slow growth or even destroy the startup.
Choosing a name and logo without violating another company’s trademark
While protecting the intellectual property of the startup is important, it’s just as crucial to avoid violating another company’s trademark in the early stages of formation. An experienced startup attorney will guide a startup through choosing a name and logo safely. They will also help the startup decide whether to operate under a trade name, research domestic and foreign businesses to make sure the name is available, and search the databases of all states where the company plans to do business.
Ensuring that web domain ownership is solid
Website addresses fall under intellectual property and while it may be tempting to rush into reserving a domain name in the early stages of company formation, it’s important to have professional assistance in determining that the domain address is available and that using it won’t infringe on another company’s rights under the law.
In many cases, a desired domain name must be purchased from someone who is simply holding the name with plans to sell it. Startup lawyers are familiar with the process of purchasing domain names from squatters and can help guide a new company through the process.
Creating custom employment documents to cover stock options, contract offers, and IP assignments
While startup founders can easily find free legal forms and documents online to create legally binding documents, even one small misstep could mean trouble for the company owners. Hiring the first employees is exciting and expanding the team creates a wonderful opportunity for growth. A startup lawyer can handle every detail; from setting up a comprehensive employee handbook to advising the startup on workplace safety measures worth adopting.
Non-disclosure agreement contract creation, execution, and enforcement
Startups depend on complete privacy during the building and inventing stages of new idea development. A non-disclosure agreement (NDA) keeps sensitive information under wraps and away from curious, possibly malicious, competitors. Deterring the theft of intellectual property is a job best left to experienced professionals. Business owners need to share sensitive information with investors, clients, employees, and new partners. An NDA typically covers information like sales contacts, client lists, recipes or formulas, certain aspects of the manufacturing process, or accounting information.
Choosing an attorney with a solid understanding and a vast amount of experience in tax and employment law, contracts, IP, and corporate law early in the life of a start-up makes a huge positive difference as the company changes and grows.
When is it Time to Hire a Startup Attorney?
Things move fast in new companies, so the best time to hire a startup lawyer is at the very beginning. As the company moves forward and grows it may seem like there’s never a good time to bring someone new on the scene.
In a world where it’s fairly easy to find nearly any information on the Internet, it may seem like hiring a lawyer to handle the potentially sticky or cumbersome day-to-day legal activities of a new company can wait.
Hiring a startup lawyer to handle important matters in the earliest stages of company development is a smart move that will prevent future headaches and may even save the company from disaster.
Focus on the needs of the moment and hire the lawyer that has a corresponding specialty. By practicing this request for advice and guidance, startup founders can form relationships with more than one Los Angeles startup lawyer and use them as needed. As the company grows, it may become necessary to hire full-time counsel. When that need arises the founders will have the experience and connections they need to make the best choice.
Why use UpCounsel to hire a Los Angeles Startup Attorney?
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Legal Services Offered by Our On-Demand Los Angeles Startup Attorneys
On UpCounsel, you can find and connect with top-rated Los Angeles startup attorneys & lawyers that provide a range of startup law services for startups and entrepreneurs that are starting a business. Any of the top-rated Los Angeles startup lawyers you connect with will be available to help with a variety of your startup law related legal needs on-demand or on an ongoing basis in the city of Los Angeles, CA.
From primarily dealing with things like business formation, contracts, leases, equity financing, securities, and intellectual property protection, the Los Angeles startup lawyers on UpCounsel can help you with a variety of specialized and general startup law related legal matters. No matter what type of startup law needs you have, you can easily hire an experienced Los Angeles startup lawyer on UpCounsel to help you today.
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