Do you run your own tech business or are starting off in the tech sphere? If you are, there are a number of steps you should think about to help safeguard your business while complying with relevant laws and regulations in your jurisdiction. Here are a few key points to be aware of as you grow and scale.
Sorting the legal structure of your start-up is an important first step towards scaling legally. Whether you decide to run as a sole trader or a limited company, choosing the right legal structure is an essential part of scaling your business, so it’s important to think about which suits your business needs (particularly in terms of how the business is run, tax treatment etc).
Here at Jamieson Law, we’re always talking about protecting your intellectual property as this is crucial for any tech start-up and any business in general. Protecting your IP includes trademarks, (logos, wordmarks, and slogans) and copyrighting your work. Related to that, having a non-disclosure agreement in place with clients and suppliers can also be helpful as that will prevent them from disclosing confidential information about your business. Doing this can help prevent others from copying your technology and give you a competitive advantage.
Data protection and compliance with GDPR is also really important. GDPR is one of the toughest privacy security laws in the world. These are very strict rules and regulations relating to the collecting and processing of personal data, so as a business owner, you need to be aware of it. As you are growing and scaling, you should regularly complete a data mapping exercise. This is to audit what data is coming in and going out of your business. Abiding by data privacy laws is crucial and there are serious repercussions for non-compliance.
As your start-up grows, and you start to employ staff, you’ll need to have in place employment documents such as employment contracts, and possibly employee handbooks/policies, and NDAs. It’s important to have these documents reviewed by a lawyer to ensure they comply with relevant laws and protect your business interests.
If you’re a UK business and you’re planning to raise funds for your start-up, you’ll need to comply with the FCA (the Financial Conduct Authority) in relation to any marketing of the investment opportunity. It’s important to work with a lawyer that can help you ensure compliance in this area.
If you are a tech start-up and want to know more information on any of the above, book a free legal advice call today.