It’s a fact of life that every entrepreneur will at one time or another face a legal issue. It might be drafting a contract for a new employee, negotiating a vendor contract, or an actual lawsuit, but at some point you’ll be looking at a legal document asking yourself “What does ‘x’ mean?” This is usually the time that most entrepreneurs start thinking about whether or not to engage an attorney, and it can be a daunting task. How do you know if they’re trustworthy? Should I pay a retainer? And perhaps most confusingly, how do I manage an attorney and know if they’re doing a good job when I’m not a lawyer?
You don’t want to wait to find out the answer to these questions, so upfront research is key. Some easy first steps: look for references from former and/or existing clients and check your local state bar website to ensure the attorney hasn’t faced any discipline in the past. If their former clients still speak highly and their record is clean, it’s a great sign.
But other than some objective research, what else do you look for? Entrepreneur Magazine put out a great article outlining some tips for hiring and managing your startup attorney. The key takeaway: you know your business and legal needs, so come in with a clear plan and expectations for the attorney.
At FairClaims we don’t act as representatives, but in conjunction with an attorney skilled at drafting we can absolutely help you to both limit having to go to small claims court and mitigate social media backlash. Consider inserting an arbitration clause into your contracts or terms of service. With FairClaims you’ll get a more thorough review than court, with highly skilled attorneys acting as your arbitrator. Check out our clauses here, and give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in having FairClaims help with your disputes, or have any questions!