New York City Corporate Lawyer
Starting a business is exciting. It represents how an entrepreneur’s ideas or concepts are put into motion. Fridman Law Firm’s New York City startup lawyers proactively help founders get the most out of their new ventures. Our startup lawyers focus on a life-cycle approach, providing reliable and trustworthy guidance on entry strategies, growth, corporate governance, and exit plans.
From the start of our relationships with founders, entrepreneurs, and business owners, our NYC startup lawyers help clients understand the pros/cons of their options, ensuring they choose the most appropriate entity form to run their business. Our legal team provides continual and timely legal assistance, representing startups in all aspects necessary for their success.
What Is a Startup Lawyer?
A startup business is an entity that is in its early stages and is typically characterized by high risk and uncertainty. Entrepreneurs with a vision for new products and services generally establish startups, hoping to transform them into successful brands.
A startup lawyer is a legal expert who helps founders of such startups get up on their feet — in a legal sense. They understand most startups’ unique challenges and help novice and experienced entrepreneurs navigate the various stages of a startup’s life.
Why Do Startups Need Lawyers?
Although you can start a new business entity in New York City without the help of an attorney, having one can make a significant difference, making everything easier and helping you avoid legal problems in the future. If you’ve done your research and talked to other startup founders, then you’ve probably heard about some of the legal issues they may have faced, such as forming improper legal entities, not assigning intellectual property, lacking a solid operating agreement or founder share issuance documents, and failing to get necessary permits and licenses.
Working with an experienced New York law firm like Fridman Law Firm can help you avoid some of the common issues that founders and startups face. Here’s why you need a startup lawyer:
Legal Structure and Formation
Business incorporation is the process of registering a business in your state as a legal entity separate from its founders. An experienced New York City startup lawyer may offer counseling on the most appropriate company structure, including a Partnership, a Limited Liability Company, a Corporation, or an S-Corporation. Tax and legal considerations play a huge role when selecting a business structure.
Remember, improper business incorporation may lead to ownership and management disputes. Fortunately, an experienced startup attorney can help you weigh the pros and cons of all business structures so that you can choose the one that suits your business needs.
Startups require money to set up shop. This is usually one of the earliest objectives for most startups. However, it’s crucial that you don’t blindly rush into raising capital for your business. Conducting due diligence on potential investors can ensure you mitigate any legal or financial problems. Due diligence involves carefully analyzing the potential risks and benefits, as well as funding opportunities and the legality of investments. This may imply conducting background checks on potential investors, their financial statements, histories, and objectives.
Corporate governance refers to the rules, practices, and processes by which companies are operated, regulated, and controlled. The ideal corporate governance structures require balancing the interests of the founders, investors, shareholders, management, and customers. An experienced New York City startup lawyer who understands relevant laws and governance principles can provide valuable oversight and prevent startups from being exposed to unnecessary risks.
Intellectual Property (IP) Protection
Many startups in New York City face a variety of IP concerns that can have profound legal and financial consequences if they aren’t preemptively addressed. For instance, someone you may have interacted with might try to duplicate your business model or invention if you delay applying for appropriate patents. An individual, like an employee, may also claim ownership of a product or technology your company owns if you don’t enforce IP rights over your business assets.
Working with a skilled New York City startup lawyer from the start is the best way to avoid IP-related issues.
Contracts and Agreements
An NYC lawyer can also offer legal guidance to startup businesses on standard and industry-specific contracts. Services may include drafting, reviewing, and negotiating contracts and agreements with stakeholders, such as co-founders, investors, employees, and customers. A lawyer can help founders comply with requirements and ensure they don’t overstep their legal boundaries.
Where confidential information is involved, a lawyer can draft non-disclosure agreements and non-compete agreements to protect their client’s intellectual property, ideas, designs, and other vital proprietary assets. They can protect your brand and pertinent information through confidentiality agreements with suppliers, employees, and other partners.
Compliance and Regulations
New York startups must adhere to various rules, regulations, and requirements, including employment laws, tax obligations, data privacy regulations, workplace safety regulations, and industry-specific regulations. Many of these laws are unintuitive, while others seem unfair. Most are complex and require the help of a knowledgeable attorney to decipher.
Noncompliance for startups and even well-established businesses can have serious and expensive consequences. An attorney may help you understand the types of licenses you require as well as how employment laws may affect your business. They may also obtain your business’s Employer Identification Number (EIN).
An experienced early-stage startup lawyer can help founders identify and mitigate risks. By conducting assessments of the startup’s internal governance, business contracts, and capitalization, a startup’s legal counsel can help business owners proactively avoid risks, resolve issues before they blow up, or navigate complex issues that already exist in the business.
Additionally, an attorney may provide legal guidance on drafting agreements, structuring business entities, and implementing policies and standard operating procedures. By having a New York City startup lawyer on board, business owners can have peace of mind since they have a legal expert to identify and address legal risks, ultimately supporting the emerging company’s success.
Starting a new business can be complex and challenging. Our legal team understands how tempting it may be to handle legal matters independently. But hiring a reliable New York City business law firm can provide numerous benefits and protect your short and long-term business interests.
Some of the startup services you can expect at Fridman Law Firm include:
- Business entity formation
- Sole proprietorship
- Limited liability companies (LLCs)
- Capitalization strategy and cap table management
- Shareholder agreements
- Founder agreements
- Equity financing and venture debt financing
- Private placement memorandums
- Term sheet preparation and negotiation
- Financing documents
- Friends and family >> SEED >> Series A, B, C, D etc. >> Exit
- Convertible notes
- Simple Agreement for Future Equity (SAFE)
- Subscription agreements
- Filing Form D with the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC)
- Compliance with state “blue sky” laws
- Employment and independent contractor agreements
- Technology and internet law
- Master Services Agreements (MSAs)
- Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Agreements
New York Business Attorneys You Can Trust for Your Startup
When you choose to work with Fridman Law Firm, you are not working with just another NYC business or corporate law firm. Fridman Law Firm understands what it takes for businesses to comply with relevant state and federal laws and regulations.
No matter what stage of the cycle your startup is currently at, our New York City startup lawyers want to be part of your success story. Fridman Law Firm offers a full range of services for NYC startups. Call 212-262-9823 today to schedule a free consultation.