Hey, entrepreneur. So, you’ve figured out the next great thing! You’ve found a product or service that will help you become northeast Ohio’s next hometown hero and a world class celebrity. Now what? What details do you need to deal with before start up, if any?
Maybe you’ve invented a hands-free way to browse the web, or a delicious zero-calorie pizza pie, or the next killer app. Maybe its a gourmet restaurant that prepares decadent meals out of peat moss, dandelions, and biodegradable waste and your creations are irresistible to the most sophisticated pallet. So, what else is there? There’s nothing to it but to do it, right?
If “doing it” includes taking care of the 10 items below that every entrepreneur should deal with before start up, then you’re good to go. Get after it. On the other hand, if you gloss over any of these 10 items, you might be in for some trouble. In short, to be a successful entrepreneur, you should have strategies to deal with these 10 aspects of your business before you start signing contracts and becoming obligated to meet the demands of myriad third parties:
- Type of business (C Corp., S Corp, LLC, and Partnership are the most common, broadly speaking)
- Partnership Agreement, Operating Agreement, or Corporate Regulations to set out how the business will be run
- Insurance coverage
- Taxes and accounting
- Financing the business
- Real estate
- How you’ll deal with employee or contractor issues (i.e., non-compete covenants, discrimination, wage laws, difference between an independent contractor and an employee, etc.)
- Intellectual Property
- Consumer sales practices
Dealing with these 10 issues appropriately can mean the difference between becoming the next Steve Jobs or Moe Shobs. You don’t know who Moe Shobs is? Neither do I; that’s the point.
This isn’t just “lawyer mumbo-jumbo.” Think about it. You don’t want to be the bar owner who gets sued for “incalculable damages” for copyright infringement because you didn’t pay for a license to allow cover bands to play on Saturday nights. You don’t want to be the gourmet restauranteur who gets locked into a triple-net lease for five years in a location where you can’t possibly obtain a liquor license. You don’t want to be the techie whose employment contract prevents you from keeping all the money from that hands-free web browser because of a non-compete covenant in your contract with your former employer.
I’ll be blogging about entrepreneurship and issues like these right here on www.o-lawfirm.com. I urge you to contact me (330-441-2027 or firstname.lastname@example.org) so that I can collaborate with you and the rest of your team to help you get moving on the path to success in a strategic manner. If you have legal issues, I’ll find solutions. Let’s get to work.
Mark S. Ondrejech
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