Now there is no need for an attorney’s services to form your company legally. In most cases, you can search it by yourself. Some states have made this process automatic. You should go to your state’s official website, fill out the form online and pay the fee. Afterwards, you will get your certificate via email.
The other thing that is better to pay a lawyer for is a shareholders’ agreement. This is the agreement between all the founders of the company. In this case, it is very dangerous trying to find one on the Internet because you may not know what kind of document you should sign.
Before registering a trademark, you should think whether you could spend this money more thoughtful. The Lanham Act and the Common law protect unregistered trademarks while they also give a real effect to the registered ones. Of course, the registered mark will give your young company more protection but it’s up to you whether you need that additional safety.
It is very important, however, to protect your patent, if your company is selling something that was invented by your company. The first company who files the patent will win. So, it is much better to pay a lawyer for it than simply lose some part of your profit just for being greedy.
Private Placement Memoranda
Having a PPM might attract some certain investors to your company, but it is not mandatory to pay an attorney to help you. In general, it is legal not to have this document, if you are selling stock to wealthy individuals. It all depends on your auditory. If your potential investors require you to have a fully finished PPM, then you won’t have any option rather than create one. But some of them are fine with a short summary. However, it will be wise to talk to a lawyer about your stock sales compilation with the state security law.
Some founders like to spend additional funds on asking an attorney for employment agreements, sometimes specified for each employee. Such a procedure would be helpful in cases, when an employer hires an employee for a term with a promised severance package. In real life, however, it is a rare situation, when an employee is hired on a term basis with a severance package. For startup projects, people may be hired without any reason, so there’s no need for employment agreement at all.
Instead, having your employees sign a confidentiality agreement would be a smart decision. A federal law gives employers protection of their companies’ secret.
It is a common mistake to consider that you need a stock certificate. In most cases, you will never need it. In many states, it is totally up to the board of directors to decide whether your company need it or not. Certificates are always lost, and if the company is sold, buyers will want the original documents. So, it would be better just to save money by not paying your lawyer for helping you with the one you don’t need.
However, investors may require you to have this type of certificate, but you do not have to solve this problem first. At the very beginning of your company, you should concentrate on the things that will keep it attractive to the potential investors instead of paying the attorney for printing documents.