This episode kicks off our three-part series with the Bend Law Group. I was joined by Doug Bend to talk about business entity structures and tax implications.

Doug’s specialty is entity formation, helping business owners figure out what type of legal structure makes the most sense for their business. His firm’s clients range from hardware to software businesses, and from sole proprietorships running out of owners’ basements to brick-and-mortar companies. While many BLG clients are based in the Bay Area, more clients are coming in from around the world. He’s a funny, straight-talking human being who clearly cares about his clients and their work.

In the show, Doug gets into how he reaches prospective clients, how he explores the client relationship and finds the right fit, and when he might refer a project to someone else, which he does generously and often.

Wonder whether your business could run as a sole proprietorship? Or maybe you’ll need an LLC or a larger-scale C Corporation, S Corporation, or B Corporation? This episode will help you find the answers. Stay tuned for Part II about intellectual property law and Part III about seeking funding!

In this episode…

  • What small businesses should be thinking about and when they need legal advice
  • How to protect your small business from liability
  • Why one of the best legal protections for small businesses is great customer service
  • How to weigh the legal issues with hiring employees versus independent contractors
  • When a small business needs insurance
  • A role-play of an initial consultation with a new BLG client
  • What the ballpark legal costs will be for a small business
  • How to think about equity and estate planning for employees
  • At what stages in a start-up’s life it makes sense to revise earlier legal documents
  • What happens when your company gets sued and how much it could cost
  • Class action lawsuits and what kinds of companies might be affected
  • What kinds of businesses should set up as an LLC, and what the costs and benefits are
  • How the LLC structure affects investment in the business and what the tax implications are
  • What kinds of companies should use the Delaware C Corporation structure (hint: big ones and aspiring big ones)
  • What an S Corporation is, and why it’s better for tax purposes than a C Corp for some small businesses
  • What the required annual meetings and filings for corporations are
  • Why a B Corporation might be the right choice for businesses that need to weigh the social impact of their work (and why Bend Law Group is one and specializes in creating them)



  • Bend Law Group website
  • Email Doug or call him at +1 (415) 299 0257
  • Modify Watches (BLG’s first client)