What to include in a startup partnership contract.
Ready to launch your next big idea? Once you find a startup partner, be sure to craft a solid partnership agreement to ensure everyone is on the same page before you begin.
Startup partnership agreement essentials.
Startups can be tricky when you work with a partner. When things start growing, it’s essential to have a clear outline of each person’s responsibilities and the structure of the relationships to prevent misunderstandings and conflicts — which can be quite expensive and cause you to lose control of your business.
The foundation of a solid startup partnership model is a well-written contract. Be sure to include all essential information:
- Name of the partnership or startup
- Each partner’s contributions to the startup
- Allocation of profits and losses
- Each partner’s authority within the company
- Decision-making power
- Management duties
- New partner admission process
- Partner withdrawal or departure procedure
- Dispute resolution
This list is by no means exhaustive. Add as much information as you see fit to ensure smooth operation of the startup. The more detail you add, the better. (When in doubt, it’s always appropriate to consult with a legal professional.)
Create a fillable PDF form.
Once you have an outline of your startup partnership contract, save it as a PDF to maintain formatting no matter which devices your partners use. You can also create fillable PDF forms that they can fill out and sign right from their computers or mobile devices. In addition, you can work with PDFs online right from your web browser using Acrobat online services.
Some startup partnership agreements are multiple pages long. To make it easy for you and your partners to navigate larger documents, insert hyperlinks into the PDF. That way, you can click on links that take you to related parts of the document without the need for endless scrolling.