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Legal for Lean Startups: Finding the Minimum Viable Legal Strategy

  • Mar 20, 2014 · 6:00 PM

As a startup in the process of finding a business model, how should you deal with the legal and organizational aspects of starting and running a company?  Ignore them?  Invest heavily in filing patents? Somewhere in between?

K. Thomas Stevens, who's helped many of our members navigate legal and organizational considerations, will lay out a framework for what you should consider and when.  He'll cover:

• Entity formation, co-founder and operating agreements

• Intellectual property, including trademarks, patents and trade secrets* What you need when, and how to avoid distractions

About the Speaker

K. Thomas Stevens is Principal of Stevens & Associates, President of the British American Business Council, as well as an English solicitor and an American attorney (NY, DC, IL). He's an avid supporter of early-stage entrepreneurs, mentoring through Startup Trebuchet. He serves on the Boards of Chicago Lean Startup Circle, British American Business Council, I-Go, and MoneyThink.

Earlybird Tickets:  $20 through March 17th

Regular price tickets: $25 through March 19th

After March 19th admission will be $30 per person


6:00 PM to 6:50 PM - Networking over beer and pizza

6:50 PM to 7:00 PM - Announcements

7:00 PM to 8:00 PM - Speaker and Q&A

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  • Max

    I thought the speaker was great and very knowledgeable. I have 2 items of feedback: 1) Don't take questions till the end. Taking questions throughout the presentation resulted in a very long presentation and pretty much side tracked the presentation a couple times. I had to leave at 8:05pm and I really wanted to hear about legally forming the startup and we didn't even get to talk about that. Also, a lot of those questions were very rhetorical that didn't have much to do with early stage startups. Like the patent gathering of Google and such. 2) I wish the slides were numbered like Slide 8 out of 20 so we knew how far in the presentation we were. I don't know if I would come back to this meetup.

    1 · March 21, 2014

    • Kyle G.


      I apologize for inconveniencing you and the rest of the attendees. It was my first time at a Lean Start-Up so you shouldn't let my intrusion affect your impression of the group as a whole. I also apologize to the organizers of this great event for instigating negative feedback. I learned a lot from the speakers and made some great connections afterwards so I really appreciate you putting it together.

      In regards to my redundant question about the risk of dedicating my career to a product vulnerable to lawsuits by multi-billion dollar competitors… Mike Turner provided me with a great response and gave me some piece of mind, which I really appreciate.

      Again, I sincerely apologize if my questions were out of line. I plan on being a part of the Chicago technology and start-up community for the rest of my life and by no means want create a negative impression of myself. I’m always learning and appreciate any constructive feedback.

      Kyle Germaine


      March 21, 2014

  • William "Bill" B.

    I thought the presentation was great! Is Tom's presentation available somehow? Thank you to the organizers for setting this up. --Bill

    March 21, 2014

  • Rebekah C.

    I enjoyed the presentation very much.

    1 · March 21, 2014

  • Norberto B.

    The information I thought I was getting, I didn't get. But the information that I did get was extremely useful and relevant.

    March 20, 2014

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