How 2 Make Sure You Don’t Get Sued
The following post is from Yushan Lou ’18, a Butler Venture Accelerator team member.
Earlier this month, we were honored to have Jack Steele from Pierce Atwood LLP, a premier law firm with a catalyst team that consists of experienced business advisors, host How 2 Make Sure You Don’t Get Sued. Experienced with helping entrepreneurs and startups growing into profitable business, Jack covered some of the most common mistakes startups make and how to avoid them. Here were some of the takeaways:
Remember to make arrangement and agree ahead of time on how to divide the equity.
A common problem startups face is the equity arrangement between multiple founders. This is often ignored at the beginning stage of developing a company. However, as the startup grows into a real business, the arrangement of equity is crucial for the future of the company. The founders might hold different opinions on how they want the company to grow; some of the founders might decide to back out and start a new venture on their own. When things like this occur, you realize how important it is to have an arrangement with clear rules on how to divide the equity at the first place. Before making the arrangement, think about questions: Who is the founder? Who is the partner? Who is the person the company cannot live without?
You own what you pay for
If you run a business in which intellectual property is crucial to your success, an Employee Invention Agreement has to be signed to protect your valuable assets. Whether your employees are coders, engineers, chemists, inventors, an Employee Invention Agreement helps to make sure that you, the employer, own the inventions they create at your workplace. When you are developing an app with contractor, to ensure you own all the rights to the app you commissioned, you and the app developer should sign agreements that you own the app’s design, source code and all of its content.
What are #How2Tuesdays?:
Want to learn something really practical to get your startup moving in the right direction? #How2Tuesdays are short, workshop style sessions meant to bring you very specific, user friendly instruction on some of the most important things you need to know how to do for your venture. Every Tuesday at 5pm in the Blank Center!