Splitting Equity

How to Split Equity in Your Startup (updated)

Most startup founders have a pretty basic understanding of how to split equity in their startup. “I want to split equity 70-30” or “I want to split it 50-50.” That’s an okay starting point, but it doesn’t get you all the way there. To get it right, you need to understand the little nuances. And … Read More

The Right Way to Buy a Business

Some new entrepreneurs seek to jump start sales by buying an already-existing business. Some established businesses attempt to streamline their expansion by doing the same. If you’re considering buying a business, understand this is likely to be one of the largest purchases you, and your company, will ever make. Each business and industry is different. … Read More

Due Diligence: The Top 6 Items to Uncover Before You Buy a Business

Due Diligence: The Top 6 Items to Uncover Before You Buy a Business

When you’re under contract to buy a house, the last thing you’d skip would be the inspection. This is when you hire a professional to find out if the sewer is clogged, if the roof is leaky, if the floors are defective, and whether there’s carbon monoxide, radon, or mold in your hopeful home. It’s … Read More

How the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA) Affects You

This article is the first in a series of articles that will be written on Internet Privacy Policies. This article is intended to succinctly communicate the important legal issues of CalOPPA. The purpose of this article is simple – to notify website owners of whether they should be CalOPPA compliant. What is CalOPPA? The California … Read More

10 Common Mistakes in Business Contracts

Having to negotiate and formalize a contract is great news for a startup. What it means is, we’re in business! But it also means you’ve come to a place where your choices and actions have real consequences. Make no mistake, one badly constructed contract absolutely has the power to undo every minute of work you’ve … Read More

Startup Checklist

The Ultimate Startup Checklist

By combing the Interwebs, poring through my personal library, and applying my own experience in working with more than 100 startups, I’ve compiled this checklist of 25 items to review and consider as you launch your startup. I hope you find it useful. Decide whether starting a business is right for you and what kind … Read More

Social Media and Confidentiality Clauses

Recently read an article about a teenager whose Facebook status update cost her father the $80,000 settlement he won in an age-discrimination lawsuit. The facts are simple. Father signed an agreement for an $80,000 settlement in an age-discrimination case. The daughter bragged about the award on Facebook. The employer sued to get the settlement award … Read More

An Analogy on Negotiation

I volunteer as a Guardian Ad Litem with the Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center. Basically, what this means is that when there is an incident of alleged domestic violence that involves a restraining order and there are children included in the order, I investigate what’s happened to ensure that the children’s rights are protected. Sometimes, … Read More

Inevitable Disclosure Doctrine: When Your Employer Can Keep You from Working for a Competitor

Most people have heard of non-compete agreements. But there’s another scenario where an employer can keep you from working for a competitor, even in the absence of a prior agreement: the Inevitable Disclosure Doctrine. Three tests must be met for a court to invoke the doctrine. 1) You must possess trade secrets that you do … Read More