I don’t know about you, but when I hear the words “articles of incorporation”, “operating agreement”, “intellectual property protection”, or “taxes” I feel like running in the opposite direction. Fast.
While many (if not most) social entrepreneurs don’t have a background in corporate or entrepreneurial law, the unfortunate reality exists that legal and corporate requirements are simply part of starting a social purpose venture. This week, we are highlighting a fantastic legal resource for social entrepreneurs, enterprising nonprofits, and mission driven businesses alike, that provides in one place a broad menu of free legal information prepared by leading law firms and lawyers and specifically tailored to the needs of social sector organizations in the US.
LawForChange® is a unique legal resource for people and organizations dedicated to improving lives and bringing about positive social change. Its intended audience includes social entrepreneurs and innovators, social enterprises, charities, community organizations, philanthropies, faith-based organizations and all manner of nonprofit organizations. Its content includes downloadable legal tools, directories of pro bono service providers, a glossary of social enterprise related legal terms, and in-depth information on critical topics and challenges faced by social sector organizations (like fundraising, governance, intellectual property, lobbying and advocacy, and loads more).
One of our favorite resources contributed by LawForChange is the Start-Up Toolkit, which provides a list of issues and steps that social sector organizations should consider before launching a new venture. It incorporates all of the scary aforementioned topics into an easy-to-digest list (with supporting links nearly every step of the way) to ensure that you don’t have a panic attack as you start thinking about the legal implications of launching a social venture.
So, take a deep breath, get your taxes done, and then visit LawForChange to find the support you need and answers to your legal questions about starting a social enterprise.