What to Ask: Startup Tips and Incorporation | Jose Garriga, Esq.
Starting a new business? UpCounsel attorney Jose Garriga explains what every startup should be asking their legal team about startup tips and incorporation3 min read
Should we go international?
Most companies only contemplate the possibility when the need is too evident. Of course, some see the opportunity and reap the profits.
How do we cut legal fees?
Most SME have limited knowledge about alternative fees systems.
How much compliance is too much?
Compliance is important but there is some proliferation of professionals who just see a chance to charge fees. Cover your basics and then some but don't go over the top.
Is litigation the way to go?
Prior notice and litigation is good...for the stone age. Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) systems need to be known and widely used so the fees and the ability to have your contracts abroad enforced are where you need those to be.
What do I do if things go south?
Every entrepreneur needs to have a plan to cut losses and to look elsewhere.
What is the best way a small business owner can protect personal wealth and assets from business risks?
You need to know when you may be liable and to what extent and put as many walls as possible between your ventures and your personal income. Threats are usually identified a bit too late and the protections is not enough due to lack of prevision.
What is the best way a small business can maximize its tax deductions? (Optional)
Depends extraordinarily on the type of business and its regular place of business.
What specifically are small business owners most confused about when you first meet with them?
Banking products, insurance and contracts in general.
How can quality legal services help a small business grow?
Cross-selling with other clients and associations members, bringing experience to the table when it comes to treat third parties and the ability to discuss their behavior.
How can quality legal services help small businesses save money?
Cutting costs. From finding hidden costs like unexpected taxes, planning estate deployment, bargaining favorable banking and insurance products, cutting legal bills and reducing the need for litigation or the number of potential "professional debtors".
How can small businesses maximize the value of their legal team’s services?
Being given different options that may fit the needs of the business as alternative fees arrangements, have an affordable international desk to study the option to sell abroad, participate on lobbying efforts.
Should business partners have the same amount of equity in a company? Why or why not?
It depends. Sometimes it might be a hindrance, just provoking the "drown king", as in chess. The company may lose flexibility going forward unable to make quick decisions or threatened by the entry of third parties in the place of one partner. On the other hand, coordinated efforts from multiple persons is the way to go for numerous SME, bringing the opportunity to mix a great pace at work and quality of life.
What are the top three things a small business owner should be aware of when purchasing an existing business?
Due diligence reviewing customer lists, sale records, advertising materials, and employee contracts, How long have the employees been there? Are there any key employees who would be hard to replace?, Find out if there are any human resources issues or outstanding lawsuits pending against the company.
Do you have any other essential legal guidance for startups that you haven't already included in this survey?
Consultants are key to steady growth. Most companies are able to survive in a decent environment but the majority also gets to their glass ceiling a bit too early.