As an entrepreneur engaged in a startup, there are several issues that need to be resolved in the early days of establishing your company. Failing to do so may involve complicated legal issues where you will need an experienced criminal lawyer or corporate lawyer especially in terms of copyright and patents, where even partnerships especially, can go wrong.
One of the biggest real life examples of copyright litigation was faced by Mark Zuckerberg himself in the Zuckerberg vs. Winklevoss faceoff regarding the rights of Facebook. Though Zuckerberg himself walked away with the company, still the payoff to those who litigated against him including his partner, won a considerable amount of compensation.
However, not everyone can be lucky enough to own a company worth millions. With such factors in mind, it is imperative to take note of the legal aspects of a startup where every loose end should be tight enough to protect you from any chance that litigation lawyers will pursue you for copyright claims.
Here’s what you need to do:
Make a clear-cut agreement with your partners
An initial co-founder agreement will ensure you do not face any copyright problems from disgruntled co-founders. A partnership can go wrong, it happens. This is why you need to be firm in the beginning. A co-founder agreement should contain the following clauses:
- Percentage rights of individual members
- Designations of members and extent of responsibility
- The limitation of rights of a member resigning from the partnership
- The rights of remaining partners to buy shares from a resigning member