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Meet some of our Richmond Startup Lawyers

Rebecca S. on ContractsCounsel
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5.0 (2)
Member Since:
April 6, 2021

Rebecca S.

Attorney/Owner
Free Consultation
San Diego, CA
13 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA CA, DC
New England School of Law

I absolutely love helping my clients buy their first home, sell their starters, upgrade to their next big adventure, or transition to their next phase of life. The confidence my clients have going into a transaction and through the whole process is one of the most rewarding aspects of practicing this type of law. My very first class in law school was property law, and let me tell you, this was like nothing I’d ever experienced. I remember vividly cracking open that big red book and staring at the pages not having the faintest idea what I was actually reading. Despite those initial scary moments, I grew to love property law. My obsession with real estate law was solidified when I was working in Virginia at a law firm outside DC. I ran the settlement (escrow) department and learned the ins and outs of transactions and the unique needs of the parties. My husband and I bought our first home in Virginia in 2012 and despite being an attorney, there was so much we didn’t know, especially when it came to our HOA and our mortgage. Our real estate agent was a wonderful resource for finding our home and negotiating some of the key terms, but there was something missing in the process. I’ve spent the last 10 years helping those who were in the same situation we were in better understand the process.

Michael T. on ContractsCounsel
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5.0 (1)
Member Since:
June 13, 2022

Michael T.

Lawyer
Free Consultation
Fairfax, Virginia
34 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA DC, MD
College of William and Mary

I have been in practice since 1990 and practice in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. I am an experienced litigator and look forward to resolving your legal questions as efficiently as possible.

Jonathan M. on ContractsCounsel
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5.0 (1)
Member Since:
January 19, 2023

Jonathan M.

Attorney
Free Consultation
Charlotte, NC
14 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA NC, SC
Charlotte School of Law

Owner and operator of Meek Law Firm, PC. Meek Law Firm provides comprehensive business law representation, precise and informed representation for real estate transactions in the commercial and residential markets of North and South Carolina and efficient succession and estate planning for business owners and individuals.

Tina R. on ContractsCounsel
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4.9 (17)
Member Since:
February 17, 2022

Tina R.

contracts lawyer and websites
Free Consultation
Arlington, VA
17 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA DC, IL
Loyola University Chicago

15 years for legal experience; expertise in contracts, healthcare, ERISA, physicians, financial services, commercial contracts, employment agreements, etc. I am adept at all contracts and can provide you with efficient and quality services. I have worked at a law firm, financial services company, consulting ,and non-profit.

Jason H. on ContractsCounsel
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4.9 (16)
Member Since:
March 5, 2023

Jason H.

Managing Attorney
Free Consultation
Dallas, Texas
23 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA TX
Regent University, School of Law

Jason has been providing legal insight and business expertise since 2001. He is admitted to both the Virginia Bar and the Texas State Bar, and also proud of his membership to the Fellowship of Ministers and Churches. Having served many people, companies and organizations with legal and business needs, his peers and clients know him to be a high-performing and skilled attorney who genuinely cares about his clients. In addition to being a trusted legal advisor, he is a keen business advisor for executive leadership and senior leadership teams on corporate legal and regulatory matters. His personal mission is to take a genuine interest in his clients, and serve as a primary resource to them.

Charlotte L. on ContractsCounsel
View Charlotte
4.6 (2)
Member Since:
February 25, 2021

Charlotte L.

Self-Employed Legal Consultant
Free Consultation
Arlington, VA
10 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA DC
University of Virginia School of Law

I hold a B.S. in Accounting and a B.A. in Philosophy from Virginia Tech (2009). I received my J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law in 2012. I am an associate member of the Virginia Bar and an active member of the DC bar. Currently, I am working as a self-employed legal consultant and attorney. Primarily my clients are start-up companies for which I perform various types of legal work, including negotiating and drafting settlement, preparing operating agreements and partnership agreements, assisting in moving companies to incorporate in new states and setting up companies to become registered in a state, assisting with employment matters, drafting non-disclosure agreements, assisting with private placement offerings, and researching issues on intellectual property, local regulations, privacy laws, corporate governance, and many other facets of the law, as the need arises. I have previously practiced as an attorney at a small DC securities law firm and worked at Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLC. My work experience is dynamic and includes many short-term and long term experience that span across areas such as maintaining my own blog, freelance writing, and dog walking. My diverse background has provided me with a stong skill set that can be easily adapted for new areas of work and indicates my ability to quickly learn for a wide array of clients.

Amy Sue L. on ContractsCounsel
View Amy Sue
Member Since:
January 4, 2022

Amy Sue L.

President, Concierge Legal
Free Consultation
Washington, DC Metropolitan Area
27 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA CA, DC, PA
Pepperdine University School of Law

Ms. Leavens is a corporate attorney with 10 years of experience as the General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer and Corporate Secretary of a Congressionally chartered, non-profit corporation, and more than 20 years of experience as an advisor to executive officers and boards of directors in for-profit and non-profit organizations. She has substantial experience within in-house legal departments managing cross-functional teams comprised of multiple business units and attorneys on large-scale mission critical projects, and within a global law firm as a manager of public and private, domestic and international, multi-party business transactions. She has unique experience implementing government-sponsored business initiatives. Ms. Leavens was honored in 2015 as one of Washington, D.C.’s Top Corporate Counsel by Bisnow and the Association of Corporate Counsel; nominated in 2014 for the Association of Corporate Counsel (WMACCA) Outstanding Chief Legal Officer Award; and the recipient in 2014 of WMACCA’s Community Service Award.

Christopher M. on ContractsCounsel
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Member Since:
May 22, 2023

Christopher M.

Owner of The McKenna Law Group, LLC
Free Consultation
Frederick, Maryland
21 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA MD
University of Richmond, TC Williams School of Law

Skilled and experienced business attorney with vast experience in a wide array of commercial contracts. Strong emphasis on the lodging and hospitality practice field, including real estate acquisition and disposition, management agreements, franchise agreements, design & construction contracting and finance.

Meagan K. on ContractsCounsel
View Meagan
Member Since:
May 23, 2023

Meagan K.

Attorney
Free Consultation
Charlottesville, Virginia
10 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA
George Mason University School of Law

Meagan Kirchner has nearly a decade of experience in Immigration law. She has significant experience working on H-2B immigration matters. Her practice also focuses on business immigration, particularly representing corporate clients pursuing H, E3, TN, O, and L nonimmigrant classifications, as well as lawful permanent residence (EB-1A, NIW, EB-1C). Meagan has represented clients in a variety of industries including agriculture, hospitality, healthcare, IT, engineering, and finance. Meagan has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from George Mason University and a Juris Doctor degree from the George Mason University School of Law. She is licensed to practice law in Virginia and is also a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

Christi H. on ContractsCounsel
View Christi
Member Since:
July 8, 2023

Christi H.

attorney
Free Consultation
Richmond, VA
19 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA
Regent Law School

I have been practicing law for 18 years. I have worked in a mid-size firm environment where I was named a partner in 2014. In 2016, I left to start my own practice and work part-time. I handle most all corporate and transactional work and serve has outside general counsel for a number of companies

John W. on ContractsCounsel
View John
Member Since:
July 23, 2023

John W.

Strategic Business Partner
Free Consultation
Brookline, MA
38 Yrs Experience
Licensed in VA DC, MD
Georgetown University Law Center

I am a business lawyer with 30+ years of experience, with a specialization in the life sciences industry. I have been general counsel at 5 different companies - both large and growing, as well as small and emerging. I have built legal teams and have extensive experience with Boards of Directors.

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Startup Legal Questions and Answers

Startup

Convertible Note

Ohio

Asked on Jul 6, 2023

Can a convertible note be transferred?

I am a startup founder and I am considering using a convertible note to raise capital. I am aware that convertible notes are agreements between investors and startups, but I'm not sure if they can be transferred to other investors. I need to know if this is possible so that I can make an informed decision about the best way to raise capital for my business.

Paul S.

Answered Aug 4, 2023

It depends on the terms of the convertible note. If you don't want it to be transferable, then you should include a provision in the note prohibiting transfers, assignments, etc.

Read 1 attorney answer>

Startup

LLC

Texas

Asked on Oct 26, 2023

How is ownership defined in LLC formation?

I am starting a new business and am looking to form a limited liability company (LLC). I understand that an LLC is a business structure that can help protect my personal assets from any debts or liabilities of the business. I am looking to understand how the ownership of the LLC is defined and how it affects the legal and financial structure of the LLC. I am hoping to find out what type of paperwork and/or agreements need to be drawn up in order to set up the LLC properly.

Jimmy V.

Answered Nov 3, 2023

Owners of LLCs are called "Members." Members make an initial contribution of cash or other property to the LLC in exchange for their Membership Interests in the LLC. The Members can run the LLC themselves if they like. This is common in LLCs with one or only a few Members. If there are many Members, they may decide to appoint a Manager to run the LLC. Managers can be owners, and vice versa.

Read 1 attorney answer>

Startup

Terms Sheet

California

Asked on Mar 30, 2021

What are the most important things to look at in a term sheet?

I am expecting to get a few term sheets from investors in the next month. I want to know what I should be looking for.

Ramsey T.

Answered Mar 30, 2021

Every term in a term sheet, by definition is important. A term sheet is a summary of the most important parts of a "deal" - a way of getting to and negotiating the hear of the deal before filling in the gaps with boilerplate. Therefore, you should make sure that you understand all of what has been proposed and negotiated in the term sheet - even the provision that don't seem that important - because they wouldn't be in the term sheet if they weren't a key term to one side or the other.

Read 1 attorney answer>

Startup

Vesting Agreement

Pennsylvania

Asked on Apr 4, 2022

Erin hope your having a great day! I am starting up my cold pressed juice company im bring in a co founder who's handling all branding and marketing I wan to give him some equity. looking for help with splitting equity and writing up a vesting agreement. thanks looking forward to hearing from you.

.

Ryan W.

Answered Apr 26, 2022

HI Erin. Congratulations on starting your cold pressed juice venture. That is exciting. I do have experience drafting agreements between founders and investors. Vesting agreements can be very flexible to meet the needs of the parties. They are very useful when a party is investing sweat equity in addition to or in place of cash. I am happy to discuss such agreements with you and how they relate to your particular venture.

Read 1 attorney answer>

Startup

Convertible Note

California

Asked on Jul 30, 2023

Convertible note vs. equity financing?

I am an entrepreneur and I am in the process of raising capital for my startup. I am considering both convertible note and equity financing options and am trying to decide which one is best suited for my company. I need to understand the key differences between the two options to make an informed decision.

Thaddeus W.

Answered Sep 8, 2023

Good question. Convertible notes (as well as SAFE's, discussed below) differ from equity in several respects. The most fundamental difference is that a convertible note is debt. A second major difference is that, although the note is debt, its terms include the noteholder's right to acquire an equity position in the future; if a certain event later occurs (defined in the note, but typically the sale of preferred stock to a future investor (e.g. a venture capital firm), but also a sale of the company can have a similar effect), this will trigger the note to convert into equity and the note is "satisfied" ... that is, the debt is extinguished when the note converts and the holder thereby becomes an equity holder (typically coming to own shares of preferred stock very similar to that issued to the future investors in that triggering event). These two differences are related to a third. A convertible note is often issued without a valuation of the company. For example, when a startup business has no operating history, it is impossible for the startup founders or the investor to decide what the company is worth. Equity cannot be issued for a fair market value (FMV), since there is no basis to determine what the FMV is. A convertible note resolves that by giving the investor (the note holder) the right to convert the note into equity later on, when another investor and the company can agree on a company valuation. In other words, the convertible note allows the company to "kick the can (of valuation) down the road" to be dealt with at another time. But, since a convertible note is debt, is has a repayment provision, and normally carries interest. This means that the note is carried on the company's balance sheet as debt, and presents the company with the future obligation to repay the note if a conversion event has not happened before the note's maturity date. So, SAFE's are often used, especially now that they have become so familiar to investors. (SAFE stands for Simple Agreement for Future Equity). Essentially, as SAFE is a convertible note without the debt features. A SAFE carries no interest and does not have to be repaid. The investor in a SAFE will normally be sophisticated and able to assess the chances the company will do well enough for a conversion event (the issuance of preferred stock, or a sale of the company) to result in the investor's SAFE converting, and thus give the investor comfort that would otherwise be lacking in an instrument that has no repayment obligation. Like a convertible note, a SAFE kicks the can of valuation down the road, where a valuation can later be determined by the company and a future investor. Founders should exercise caution in issuing convertible notes or SAFE's. Among other reasons, founders commonly do not appreciate the impact that convertible notes or SAFE's can have on the founders' own ownership. Convertible notes and SAFE's often include a feature called a "valuation cap." This can result in surprising dilution, as well as the issuance of equity to the converting note or SAFE holder at what is effectively a very low price per share, costing the company far more than the founders may have expected. Also, notes and SAFE's with very similar, but different, terms can result in a complicated capitalization table, making negotiations with venture capital firms later on more difficult, an equity transaction more complex, and thus the process more time-consuming and (therefore) more expensive.

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