I spoke at the BurgieLaw Startup Legal Conference 2016 at MaGIC, Cyberjaya. It was an interesting and lively conference, bringing together startups and investors.
I have uploaded a copy of my presentation slides. I spoke on ‘Limiting your Liability’ and how to manage it at the start of your business and when doing business. So the first half of my talk was on the different business vehicles that can be utilised, in particular, choosing between using a company or a limited liability partnership for your business.
In the second half of my talk, I shared 5 tips on minimising disputes in the course of your business. Continue reading →
Earlier on 9 May, a few of us were at MaGIC for the BurgieLaw fireside chat to share our legal tips to startups. The Star then interviewed us for their article on ‘Don’t be penny-wise, startups: lawyers‘. I will feature some of my quotes further down below. But in particular, I emphasised to the reporter that:
“There is no true startup specialist lawyer. Startups cover many existing legal areas. It’s a matter of hiring a lawyer with the appropriate skill sets for your needs,” he said.
Having discussed in the above posts some principles which startups and small businesses should bear in mind when dealing with legal documentation, this post will address some of the more common contractual landmines — practical tips on some specific terms and conditions to look out for.
Template and automated legal documents are increasing in popularity.
For years there have been many websites offering standard contracts for download. Most of these have a US/European law focus, but the past couple of years have seen some similar services launched in Asia.
Some of these websites offer a very comprehensive collection of legal documents which address the needs of startups and small businesses in particular — everything from NDAs to equity investment agreements are available for download, usually with a fee.
My cover slide for this part of the workshop reads: “Be very very very very careful when using standard contracts” — I’m not sure whether I should have added a few more ‘very’s to statement.
Business owners should be extremely cautious when using these legal documents.