Living the Startup Life? Read These Legal Advisories

Starting a business takes more than hard work and a good idea. You need to be able to run a business, get financing, pay your taxes, protect your intellectual property, and more.

For entrepreneurs and small business owners living the startup life, here’s a roundup of recent advisories covering the diverse legal considerations that come into play when starting a business:

5 Rules of the Road For Private Company Financings (Davis Wright Tremaine LLP)

“The stereo’s bumping, you’ve got your bouncing baby startup strapped tightly in the car seat in the back, and you’re looking for ice cream, because your startup is about to startup some major crying without ice cream. If you speed, you’ll get to it faster. If you jump the curb and cut through someone’s lawn you might get to it even faster. But all of that is illegal and dangerous.” Read the full update»

I Just Started a New Business, How Do I Avoid Tax Trouble? (Davis, Brown, Koehn, Shors & Roberts, P.C.)

“Will your business have employees?  If so, each employee will need to fill out a Form W-4 at both the federal and state level to determine how much to withhold from each employee’s paycheck for state and federal income taxes.” Read the full update»

8 Steps to Starting Your Own Business (Nancy Lieberman)

“Determine your business ownership structure – sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company or corporation. Each has different tax and liability implications, so it’s wise to consult with an adviser to help determine which structure is appropriate. Then prepare the necessary legal agreements.” Read the full update»

President Obama Proposes to Expand and Make Permanent Zero Capital Gains on Small Business Investments (Davis Wright Tremaine LLP)

“…President Obama sent a Startup America Legislative Agenda to Congress that included a proposal to ‘expand and make permanent zero capital gains on small business investments,’ which is presumably a reference to making the 100% gain exclusion on Qualified Small Business Stock investments under Section 1202 of the Internal Revenue Code permanent.” Read the full update»

Surname Perceptions (Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A.)

“Are start-up owners considering how the public will perceive their name choice? It would be very interesting to see a comparison of the time and consideration that is spent on name decisions for the average small company when compared to industry giants. My guess is that many start-up business owners pick names that are personal to them, with little additional thought to the possible wide range of public interpretations.” Read the full update»

EB-5 Visas Enhanced to Increase Investments into the United States (Allen Matkins Leck Gamble Mallory & Natsis LLP)

“About 10,000 EB-5 visas are made available each year to foreign national entrepreneurs or investors who plan to make a big investment in the United States.”

Legislative Update on the state of the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program (Akerman Senterfitt)

“The program creates foreign investment by allowing a person, with qualifying immediate family members, to obtain permanent resident (green card) status by investing in a new U.S. commercial enterprise, and creating or saving 10 full time U.S. jobs. The usual required investment is $1 million, but this amount is reduced to $500,000 if the investment is made in a rural area or area of high unemployment.” Read the full update»

Why Are There Eight Million Patents? Or how to increase the value of your company by 92% (Downs Rachlin Martin PLLC)

“Other positive effects from increased patent activity are also identified: increased likelihood of securing initial funding from a prominent venture capitalist and increased likelihood of a successful IPO. I have seen this effect first-hand in financing transactions, particularly with start-up companies in the medical device sector. Large schedules of patents and patent applications are treated reverentially by investors, with the number of patents and applications often receiving more scrutiny than the content of any particular patent or application on the schedule.” Read the full update»

Congress Opens the Door to More Small Company Offerings (Christine McKillip)

“Congress has dedicated a substantial portion of its session to the securities laws in the wake of the recession and the Dodd-Frank Act. The Access to Capital for Job Creators Act, the Small Company Capital Formation Act, and the Private Company Flexibility and Growth Act all provide opportunities for small businesses and start-up companies that are currently unable to expand under the restrictive structure of the federal securities laws.” Read the full update»

SBIR Program Reauthorized with Broadened Availability to Venture-backed Companies (Morrison & Foerster LLP)

“The SBIR program is an award system for funding small businesses that propose and perform research and development that meet criteria specified by agencies within the federal government. The SBIR program envisions three phases for participant companies: Phase I, with up to $150,000 in funds (increased from $100,000 in the Reauthorization) to study feasibility and commercial potential; Phase II, with up to $1,000,000 in funds (increased from $750,000 in the Reauthorization) for additional research and development; and Phase III commercialization through non-SBIR money.” Read the full update»


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