How should I go about finding a lawyer for my startup?

Yea, thats a big one.

Just to preface, I’ve had some success with starting a web app for Facebook (4M+ active users) and it was an absolute nightmare when we needed to find a good startup lawyer.

Currently, I’m helping dozens of startups get legal stuff done withLawTrades.

Okay, now that we have some credibility out of the way, lets get it on.

How should I think about lawyers and firm selection?

– Over the past decade lawyers have become very specialized. One of the main advantages of hiring a larger firm than a small one is they have all the legal skills you need in one place. But it all comes at a cost, as larger firms are usually more expensive than solo practitioners or small firms.
– Remember, you hire a person, not a firm. You may retain the finest firm in the land but every firm has great lawyers, good lawyers and some that are neither. You only get the lawyer you hire.

Where to I start to look for a lawyer?

Most people either use the Internet or get a referral from a friend. The issue with referrals is you significantly limit your scope of relevant lawyers and the Internet just spits out too much info.

That’s why we made LawTrades–to provide a quality network of lawyers that are available on-demand.

How can I best prepare before meeting the lawyer for the first time?

Read this: How to Talk to a Lawyer (and When You Need One)

What should I look out for when meeting lawyers and why?

Trust your instincts. Input from friends and family are great but sometimes can be unreliable. Your own opinion matters a lot. While expertise and years of experience are important, if you don’t feel comfortable with person, or can’t envision yourself having confidential conversations with them, then you should probably pass on them.

What are the different payment models and how do I choose?

It’s important to understand your lawyer’s fee structure. Hourly rates continue to be the most common way to bill and are still the best measure for certain types of matters. But you should also explore alternatives such as fixed, capped, contingent, hybrid and premium-based fee arrangements.

What are red flags / top tips?

– A highly efficient $300/hour lawyer will end up costing less than a $150/hour inefficient lawyer.
– It’s always nice to meet lawyers who is already well rooted in the tech community! They may share the same startup passion you have and provide you with warm introductions to the right investors.

Hope that helps! If I can personally help out in any way then don’t hesitate to reach out 🙂