Founders have to overcome many challenges in order to successfully grow their business. Securing investment, hiring a team and bringing their solution to market are just a few of the obstacles they’ll need to overcome before being successful. However, each stage presents its own legal risks which means that they can jeopardize the success of the business even if they seem to have been accomplished. In this articles we present some key legal risks a founder needs to pay attention to:
1. Non-Disclosure agreements
You might need to disclose sensitive information when going through a due diligence process, interviewing candidates or exploring potential commercial opportunities. If disclosing this sensitive information in public would cause your business harm, it is best to protect it with a confidentiality agreement. When creating a non-disclosure agreement, it is important to define the purpose of the confidentiality agreement which will define the scope of the disclosure and to define the type of information which will be disclosed. You must also include a survivorship clause which will guarantee that confidentiality arrangements remain in place even if one of the parties cedes to exist. Read our deep dive into the key terms to look out for in a non-disclosure agreement. Find out how to create your employment contract with Legislate.
2. Employment contracts
Scaling your business often requires hiring employees. Whilst it might be tempting to use a free online template, missing clauses in your employment contract can damage your business. Restriction clauses can prevent employees from joining a competitor or taking your customers with them. Intellectual property (IP) clauses can prevent employees from appropriating your IP post-employment. Not including these clauses creates opportunities for your competitors and not protecting your IP can render your business worthless. These clauses need to be tailored to your industry and the employee’s role so that they are reasonable and not overly restrictive. Find out how to create your employment contract with Legislate.
3. Sales contracts
Every business needs to generate revenue and profits in order to grow and survive. Not all sales require formal contracts but when they do it is important that they contain the right clauses to protect your business and the commercial relationship. You should clearly define each party’s warranties and liabilities. You should also clearly state what you are providing, at what cost and over what period of time to properly manage expectations. If you are a software provider, read on to find out which clauses to watch out for in your software agreements.
In this article we’ve shared 3 legal risks founders need to pay attention to. Legal risk is often ignored because founders are put off by legal fees. However, it is more expensive to ignore them especially when services like Legislate allow you to create fair, robust contracts on no legal budget. If you are looking to grow your business without creating legal risk, why don’t you try Legislate for your contracts?
The opinions on this page are for general information purposes only and do not constitute legal advice on which you should rely.