When an entrepreneur wants to start a business, they are likely focused on making a profit and not thinking about potential conflicts that can result in litigation. However, conflicts involving a new business can arise when you least expect it and can escalate quickly into a lawsuit if they are not properly addressed. Before you know it, you may find yourself involved in a costly lawsuit and facing potential legal liability. While you cannot prevent all disputes, you can have procedures in place in the event of a dispute and take certain steps to help mitigate liability and limit litigation. The Silicon Valley litigation attorneys at Startup Company Counsel can help advise startup businesses on proper standards and practices to avoid disputes and litigation. When litigation is unavoidable, they can protect you and your startup’s rights in the California courts.
Carefully choose the business entity – Choosing the right business entity is the first step in protecting a startup and founders from unnecessary liability. Selecting which entity is best for a startup takes much consideration and often should be decided with the strategic advice from Silicon Valley startup attorneys who understand the different entities and the pros & cons that apply to each.
Have necessary documents drafted by a Silicon Valley startup attorney – Starting a business requires many documents and agreements. There are documents required to be filed with the state, and there are many documents that will help shape and regulate how day to day operations and disputes take place at the startup. Founders’ agreements, operating agreements, employment contracts and similar documents can help dictate how disagreements will be resolved without the need for court involvement. In addition, there may be an arbitration or mediation clause that will keep you out of litigation in the event a dispute arises.
Conduct intellectual property searches and seek protections – Before using a brand name or selling a product, a startup should ensure it is not infringing on the intellectual property ownership rights of another individual or business. In addition, if the intellectual property is not already protected, it is highly advised to seek counsel from an experienced intellectual property attorney who can help with the proper protection for the startup’s intellectual property.
Always have written contracts – Agreements with clients, vendors, and other businesses should always be in writing. Instead of using boilerplate contracts, the terms and conditions of each contract should be specifically tailored to fully protect the startup’s interests in each business agreement or transaction. Having a knowledgeable Silicon Valley business attorney negotiate, write and review every contract can help ensure your contracts protect you and limit litigation.
Due diligence – Always be aware of all relevant laws that apply to the startup business and the steps necessary to ensure full compliance with each law. Having the guidance of an experienced Silicon Valley litigation lawyer familiar with all applicable California laws is important to avoid any liability for non-compliance.
How to Avoid Litigation for Silicon Valley Startups
To avoid litigation and limit exposure to litigation, it is crucial to seek the advice and assistance of an experienced Silicon Valley startup attorney. At Startup Company Counsel, our legal team will help put in place the protections needed to prevent legal disputes whenever possible. If a conflict does arise, we also provide skilled Silicon Valley litigation attorneys ready to represent and ensure the rights and interests of the startup are protected. Call us today at 408-441-7555 to discuss how we can help you and your startup.