A “startup” typically means an early-stage company that, unlike a small business, is planning to achieve some level of scale within the next 5 years.
A “startup lawyer” is a corporate & securities lawyer with a specialization in emerging companies (startup) work. Very different from a more generalist corporate lawyer, or a lawyer who works with small businesses.
First-time founders, who’ve often never engaged serious corporate counsel, often struggle in locating and selecting a “startup lawyer.” The below is a curated set of articles that will help provide some clarity for Colorado startups on how to navigate the legal world.
Checklist for choosing a Startup Lawyer – High level summary of questions to ask about a startup lawyer.
Lies about startup legal fees – A quick walk-through of some of the worst lies often told to founders about how to save on legal fees.
Startups Need Specialist Lawyers – Law is a lot like healthcare. You don’t just hire a “doctor,” you hire doctors specialized in the right areas. The same is true for lawyers.
How to Avoid “Captive” Company Counsel– If you’re a first-time founder, you’re going to rely on counsel for a lot of strategic guidance in negotiating with and navigating investors. You can’t do that if that counsel is “captive” to those investors.
When a Startup Lawyer can’t scale – Assess the resources / infrastructure a lawyer has to scale with your company. Otherwise, the slowness and delays will cost you deeply in the long run. Solo / tiny firms can’t scale.
Startup Law Pricing: Fixed v. Hourly – High-end counsel usually bills by time, not on a fixed-fee project basis, and there are very good reasons for that. You can avoid surprises, without requiring unworkable fee arrangements.
Do my startup’s lawyers need to be local?– No, they don’t. And anyone saying otherwise is just trying to avoid competition from capable lawyers whose brands extend across geographies (for good reason).