Do I need a lawyer to incorporate?
We are in the early development stage still for our mobile app. I've hired a lawyer to draw up contracts, mainly for taxes purposes, but I'm wondering now if this is something I could do myself OR if I can revisit hiring a lawyer when we are progressing at a faster rate. Any advice?
No any Good Accountant or Company Formation Agent can help you with this.
No need really. The following company provides excellent services. Will both handle the incorporation steps with State and Federal. Also now provides trademark services. I used them: www.incorporate.com remarkably customer support both online and actual human follow-up calling.
I used an attorney when I formed my LLC, It only took two days to get it done. I have Legal Shield service and they did the LLC very quickly. It is worth the cost.
It depends on what state your in but generally you can go to your states site and register yourself for a lot cheaper.
My company does a lot of backend development in the mobile app industry, we are white-labeled with some of the top app developers in the US. I also have software startup experience aside from that. Speaking from both direct and observational experience, just as you've seen in your advice, many options seem to work. My observation is that yes, you can do the simplest processes yourself. One resource nobody mention that I could see is your local SBA office/SCORE. They can help and also give you another perspective, especially help with state-specific issues and issues that later may be of concern with the IRS. I sit on panels with their people all the time in startup groups and while some are a bit conservative for tech sectors, generally their advice is sound. And they're free For sure, if you consider SBA loans now or future, their guidance will help package you for that option. If you are bootstrapping and need/want total control, you might want a very simple structure until you have either prototyped, started earning revenue or acquired investment partners. Protection of intellectual property at all stages and control/limits of hired-for-work contractors will be crucial no matter what your corporate structure.
The advantages in hiring a lawyer at this stage is the protection he or she will give you in writing your 'Articles of Incorporation' when forming a corporation or 'Articles of Operating Agreement' when forming an LLC. I have written a book, 'The Business Plan and Beyond' that covers the key areas you should watch for when developing your company structure and Business Plan. It is available on Amazon as a paperback or kindle book. The development of your Business Plan is a key part of your company's development. Sometimes I find entrepreneurs are so excited about their products or services that they fail to take the necessary steps to protect themselves in the future.
The best advice I ever heard was attributed to Abe Lincoln (proved wrong as uit was not is trade) when he sent a bill to a man for $50 for surveying his land. "$50," said the man. "For putting 4 stakes in the ground?" "You're right," replied Abe and he resubmitted his bill.
Putting 4 stakes in the ground...$ 4
Knowing where to put them ...$46
The same applies to use of a lawyer. If you are knowledgeable about accounting and/or business and you know the differences between business types, e.g., sole proprietor, partnership, C Corp, LLC, LLP, then you can do it yourself at MyCorporation.com or LegalZone.com. I have 15 registered at MyCorporation and it is a simple process. I was also a partner in one of the top CPA firms, so I understand the differences.. Do you?
Mr. Bryan this is my advise for you.
The laws that govern business operations varies from one country to the other. For example if you are operating in a country like mine (Nigeria) i would have said you should go ahead with operation without necessarily hiring a lawyer. Therefore i would rather suggest that you check the laws & regulations of business operations in your country and see if it will warrant doing business with or without a lawyer. I know in some cases even acquiring license for operation requires the services of a lawyer. Alternatively, you may engage the service of a lawyer on part time basis strictly when necessary. I think that will cost less. I hope i have said something...
No you do not need an attorney,
I have completed this for myself and for others,
To place this in perspective average with attorney the cost is around 1k
To perform this same function yourself approximately 45.00 depending on which state you are incorporating in.
You will need a clear mission statement outlining the purpose for which you have entered business and the goal of that purpose. ie. . By providing available for retail resale a new and enhanced air filtration system,, We intend to improve the general and overall health of individuals in personal residences everywhere. We will facilitate the manufacture and production from our facility at _____
You will also need to create your articles of organization, this outlines the major roles as well as who controls the business. If you are in a partnership then you need to detail who the managing member is.
Also outline who is your agent for service.(single owner this will probably be you) Basically who and what address receives any legal documents for the business.
As that address is publicly listed if possible use an address besides your personal residence.
Sounds complicated but its actually very simple.
Fill in the blanks and sign on the dotted line.
Make sure you have your EIN from IRS.gov if you think it will be a while yet before you are ready to complete that step then i recommend registering your name with the secretary of state at whopping cost of a whole ten dollars and is easily completed online or in person.
If you decide to handle this yourself and run into any question feel free to contact me and I will guide you through your next steps. NO CHARGE LOL
Whether you need a lawyer or not to incorporate depends on your knowledge, skill level, and location. In many states in US you may incorporate without the assistance of an attorney and this process can be completed very easily online especially if you have decided on what type of corporation you would like to create. However in the United Kingdom and many of the Caribbean Islands require the assistance of barristers/attorneys to prepare and file documents for incorporation. If you would like further assistance and can be more specific, it is likely that you would receive more specific directions - www.gotocfs.com.