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Small Business Legal Services

Apply to work one-on-one with an attorney. Attorneys will answer questions and provide legal advice on business law needs. Please contact us at smallbiz@communities-rise.org if interested in learning more.

Types of Legal Issues We Assist Small Business Owners With:

  • Business Entity Formation – LLC/PLLC, sole proprietor, partnership, c-corporation, social purpose corporation and drafting formation agreements such as shareholder agreements, and operating agreements.
  • Maintenance and Compliance with State and Federal Law
  • Contracts – drafting and advising on business contracts.
  • Real Estate – drafting or reviewing property leases and purchase and sale agreements.
  • Taxes – advice on compliance and the legal side of federal, state, and local taxes. We recommend consulting with an accountant for assistance filing or structuring taxes.
  • Employment – preparing, reviewing and revising personnel policies, independent contractor agreements, vendor agreements, employment contracts, and confidentiality agreements.
  • Intellectual Property & Privacy – assistance with registering trademarks, and advising on copyright protection, license agreements, or website-related agreements. We do not provide assistance on patent matters.
  • Risk and Liability Assessment – including waiver and release forms, and advice on legalities of insurance coverage. We recommend speaking with an insurance broker for in-depth insurance needs.

What We Do Not Do:

  • Litigation Matters – do not provide assistance on litigation matters or with hearings. We do not help sue other parties. (Litigation is the process of taking legal action, generally in situations of conflict.)
  • Conflicts/Embezzlement – do not assist with situations of conflict between board members/staff, or embezzlement.
  • Individual Claims against Nonprofits – do not provide assistance to individuals with their pursuit of claims against nonprofit and community organizations.
  • Ongoing Legal Assistance – unable to help find an attorney to serve on a nonprofit’s board, or have an attorney be on-call or serve as General Counsel.
  • Legal Advice Over the Phone – do not provide legal advice over the phone. We are not a “hotline” service. We only provide legal assistance upon receiving a written application, however, we are available to answer questions about the application process over the phone or by email.

To be eligible for free legal services, the business owner(s) must demonstrate that the small business:

  • Is registered in Washington state;
  • Is unable to pay for legal fees without significant impairment to operations;
  • Owner(s) household income is below 80% of the King County HUD guidelines; (if more than one owner all must qualify)
  • Seeks legal assistance on a business or organizational matter

If you are interested in applying for these services or have any questions, please reach out to smallbiz@communities-rise.org.