Hiring and working with a lawyer is often confusing and daunting, especially if you’ve never done it before. But when you’re starting a business, it’s crucial. With the right expertise on your side, you can feel confident you’ve got your ducks in a row as you’re getting down to business.

When you're starting up a new business, what should you look for when hiring a lawyer? First and foremost, look for “fit” (i.e., someone you trust, get along with, enjoy working with, feel has an interest in you and what you’re working on, and can relate to you).

Just as important, you want someone that is competent, responsive, and experienced with the types of legal issues with which you will need help. The considerations that go into starting up a restaurant, say, can be very different from the considerations for starting up a software company.

Priorities that need to be addressed early on include:

* Establishing a business entity of some sort (LLC or corporation) to protect you personally from business liabilities.
* Establishing the ownership and equity rights of the company if there are multiple founders.
* Ensuring the business’s intellectual property is protected and owned by the company (especially if it is being developed by independent contractors).
* Making sure you are paying attention to the tax consequences of what you do, particularly when it comes to granting people equity.

We have nearly 22 years' experience representing people starting up new businesses. If we can be of service to you, your family, friends, or neighbors, give us a call at 253.858.5434 today.