The Shareholders Agreement, what it is, when to enter one.
A shareholders agreement outlines the relationships between the company and its various stakeholders - normally the founders and the investors.
We often have lots of founders coming to us asking for us to create a bespoke shareholders agreement, when there are just the founders in the company, to put in place the right procedures, vesting and leaver provisions to "get investment ready".
In reality, this is a totally over the top, expensive and unnecessary step that some law firms instruct startups to do before a funding round, especially as you'll have to enter a new Shareholders Agreement at the conclusion of your round, when investors have to be accounted for and will likely request changes.
That's why we at SeedLegals encourage all founders to instead have the right founders, advisors and consultancy agreements (with appropriate vesting schedules for equity) as well as IP Assignments, which covers you in terms of getting investment ready - rather than creating a bespoke shareholders agreement.
The good news is you can create all of these for free as part of the SeedLegals base plan under the team agreements section.
And when you actually come to closing your round, we will of course create for you a bespoke shareholders agreement, made exactly in line with the rest of your funding round - rather than you paying up front for something you'll need to change anyway.