Co-Founders' Agreement | Goodlawyer | Services
Goodlawyer connects clients with lawyers
Goodlawyer connects clients with lawyers

Make it official with a strong Co-founders' Agreement.

Set your business up for longterm success by clearly defining the roles and responsibilities of the founders.

$720 (+ tax)

A woman incorporating her business

Not sure what you need? Book a free call with our Legal Concierge.

Properly establish your business.

A Co-Founders’ Agreement clearly establishes the rights and responsibilities of the founders of a company. Generally, Co-Founders’ Agreements include capital contributions, special equity compensation, how shares are vested, when and how shares are sold or transferred, and if a founder leaves.

Illustration of a strong corporate owner

Why book a Co-Founders' Agreement?

Organize shares and ownership.

Clearly articulate who owns the company and how much ownership each person has.

Avoid conflict.

Developing a Co-Founders’ Agreement will inspire constructive conversations between founders and set the company up for long term success. Effective Agreements can prevent a business from imploding due to a simple difference of opinion.

Prepare for the unexpected.

What happens if a key contributor gets sick, or leaves the company unexpectedly? A well-written Co-Founders’ Agreement will establish the procedure for these situations and ensure the company continues to operate.

What's covered in a Co-Founders' Agreement?

First you'll have a kick-off call with your Good Lawyer to discuss the current status of corporation. After the call, your lawyer will collect the documents they need to complete the Agreement. They will share a copy of the final document.

Big strong corporation man

Book a Co-Founders' Agreement

1. Project kick-off call to gather information, advise you and answer questions

2. One custom Co-Founders’ Agreement

3. One round of minor revisions

How do Co-Founders' Agreements work?

A lady booking a call with a lawyer

1. Book a kick-off call

Pick a time to kick-off the project and discuss your Co-Founders’ Agreement with a Good Lawyer.

Business owner talking to her lawyer

2. Design your Agreement.

Your lawyer will collect all the necessary information to draft your Co-Founders’ Agreement.

3. Receive your Agreement

You might have to negotiate with your Co-Founders on the agreement. The first instance of the agreement is often not the final document, especially if other founders are exercising their right to seek independent legal advice.

Book a Co-Founders' Agreement

Get your paperwork done the easy way so you can get back to running your business.

Frequently asked questions

How long do Co-Founders’ Agreements take to draft?

Typically, from the time of your kick-off call you can expect to have your final Co-Founders’ Agreement within 2 weeks. It could take a bit longer if your needs are atypical, negotiations are complex, a family trust is involved, or if the founders are exercising their right to seek independent legal advice.

Do I need anything else?

Almost certainly. Starting a business properly can require a lot of legal work. Talk to your lawyer about getting a Legal Health Check if you aren’t sure what you need. Your lawyer will identify if you are missing anything important for the stage your business is currently at. 

Are Co-Founders’ Agreements required?

No, it is not a requirement that every company has a Co-Founders’ Agreement in place. Despite this, they are common in startups since they make it easier to attract investment and in small businesses with multiple founders since they often invest a mix of time and money into the new business.

Can I just use a Shareholders’ Agreement?

No. Although Co-Founders’ Agreements and Shareholders’ Agreements seem similar at a high level, there are major distinctions that prevent them from being interchangeable. Shareholders’ Agreements are typically much more complex and revolve around owning a piece of your business. Co-Founders’ Agreements apply strictly to the founders of the company and cannot be used for outside, non-founding investors. 

Where and how is a Co-Founders’ Agreement kept?

There’s no regulation, but most corporations keep their Co-Founders’ Agreement in their minute book. This is a good practice because it is intimately connected to all other corporate documents and should be reviewed regularly alongside the minute book. If you need help with your minute book and your Annual Corporate Return, we can do that too!

Can I use a Co-Founders’ Agreement I found online or a template?

It’s extremely difficult to find a reliable template for a Co-Founders’ Agreement online because the relationships involved are often complex and always unique. With that being said, they can act as a conversation starter around the key points of the future agreement.

Will I be able to communicate with my lawyer after the kickoff call?

Yes, absolutely. You can use the Goodlawyer platform to send messages and files. If substantially more communication is needed, your lawyer may request another call.

Not sure what you need? Book a free call with our Legal Concierge.

Goodlawyer is an interactive online service that makes it faster and easier for clients to find and hire legal help solely based on their preferences. We are not a law firm, do not provide any legal services, legal advice or “lawyer referral services” and do not provide or participate in any legal representation.

Goodlawyer connects clients with lawyers
Goodlawyer connects clients with lawyers
Copyright © Goodlawyer Inc. 2021