Biz Startup

Website Terms

Throughout these Terms of Use, “you” or “user” refers to any person or entity using this website, including without limitation, reading, viewing, listening to, engaging with, downloading, and/or loading into memory any aspect of this website.  “Website” refers very broadly to all the content, media, information, links, forms, frames, widgets, etc. that can be viewed, used, accessed, encountered, downloaded, and/or loaded into memory, including without limitation, anything visible or hidden, whether placed on this website by us or by third parties.

This website is provided as a general resource only.  Our intention is that this website be helpful, valid, legal, complete, and up-to-date, however, we do not guarantee such.  Rather, INGENALAW PROFESSIONAL CORPORATION ASSUMES NO LIABILITY FOR THE VIEWING OR USE OF THIS WEBSITE, NOR DOES IT OFFER A WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED.   Further, we do not intend links from this site to other Internet locations be considered endorsements of, referrals to, or affiliations with the linked locations and their related entities.

Privacy and Confidentiality

We rely on third parties to host this website, and have minimal control and understanding of the security features maintained by our host, as well as the email providers that services email related to this website.  For this reason, we urge you to exercise caution in using email or forms on this website to communicate private, sensitive or confidential information.   If you choose to send email (encrypted or otherwise) to a member of this firm, you are accepting the risks of lack of confidentiality associated with doing so.

Consequences for Illegal Activity

  1.           You agree not to hack our website, nor post offensive, defamatory or infringing information on or through our website.  
  2.           You agree not to use our website or emails for any illegal or offensive manner
  3.           You agree that if you do any of these forbidden activities listed in this section, you will pay all damages directly or indirectly associated with your conduct, including without limitation our court costs and our attorneys fees (or if we represent ourselves, then you will reimburse our time and expenses at our standard rates).

Users outside of Minnesota

The final paragraph in this Terms of Use is intended to satisfy each state’s special rules governing attorney use of the Internet.  IngenaLaw Professional Corporation does not wish to represent anyone in a state where this website fails to comply with all laws and ethical rules of that state.   To the extent that the Bar Rules in your jurisdiction require that law firms identify a principal office and/or individual attorney responsible for this Web site, please contact the firm for this information at 612-781-4426. 

Misuse of these terms, and/or any claim or disputes you have regarding this website will be subject only to the venue and jurisdiction of Hennepin County in the State of Minnesota, applying Minnesota law.


DISCLAIMERS Required by Individual States

No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. Colorado does not certify attorneys as “specialists” in any field.  The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely upon advertisements. Before you decide, ask us to send you free, written information about our qualifications and experience.  The following notice is required by the Supreme Court of Iowa: “The determination of the need for legal services and the choice of a lawyer are extremely important decisions and should not be based solely upon advertisements or self-proclaimed expertise. Memberships and offices in legal fraternities and legal societies, technical and professional licenses; and memberships in scientific, technical and professional associations and societies of law or field of practice does not mean that a lawyer is a ‘specialist’ or ‘expert’ in a field of law, nor does it mean that such lawyer is necessarily any more expert or competent than any other lawyer. All potential clients are urged to make their own independent investigation and evaluation of any lawyer being considered.”  The Mississippi Supreme Court advises that a decision on legal services is important and should not be based solely on advertisements.   Neither the Supreme Court of Missouri nor the Missouri Bar reviews or approves certifying organizations or specialist designations.  The State Bar of Nevada does not certify any lawyer as a “specialist” or “expert.”  None of the attorneys in this firm are certified as a Civil Trial, Criminal Trial, Business Bankruptcy, Consumer Bankruptcy, Creditor's Rights, Medical Malpractice, Legal Malpractice, Accounting Malpractice, Estate Planning or Elder Law “specialist” by the Tennessee Commission on Continuing Legal Education and Specialization. Certification as a specialist in all other listed areas is not currently available in Tennessee.  Unless otherwise stated, IngenaLaw Professional Corporation attorneys claiming certification in an area of law are not certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. The Wyoming State Bar does not certify any lawyer as a “specialist” or “expert.” Anyone considering a lawyer should independently investigate the lawyer's credentials and ability and not rely upon advertisements or self-proclaimed expertise.


SuperCare Legal Service Plan


Our flexible service plan is designed to get small business using their lawyer like the big corps and seasoned business owners all do -regularly.  Too often small companies delay consulting with their attorney, often until it is too late to get the most value from legal advice.


Step 1:  Receive a no-obligation initial consultation.  If you decide not to subscribe to the SuperCare Plan, you only pay our normal charge for an initial consultation.

Step 2:  Following the initial consultation your attorney can help you prioritize the legal work to focus on in the coming year and recommend which of the add-ons are best for your business. 

Step 3:  Submit your application with payment, and tell us which of the add-ons you wish to include.

BASELINE SERVICES: (all are included) 

  • Quarterly legal strategy sessions (usually 1-2 hours)
  • Unlimited short calls (i.e., up to 15 minutes per day)
  • 10 pages of document review.  (This might be 1 long contract, 10 1-page contracts, 2 letters and a lease, etc.)
  • 25% discount on all attorneys fees for work not covered in the plan

GROUP I ADD-ONs: (pick one from this group)

  • 2 hours of attorney time on any matter within our law practice
  • 7 additional pages of document review

GROUP II ADD-ONs: (pick one from this group)

  • 4 hours of attorney time on any matter within our law practice
  • 16 additional pages of document review
  • Entity formation (incorporation).  This includes consulting to ensure proper ownership and capital structure, training on how to maintain the required formalities of an Inc or LLC, and drafting and filing of the necessary paperwork to form your corporation or LLC.
  • Entity formation (incorporation) cleanup services.  Whether you filed the Secretary of States 1 page Articles or you downloaded forms from online, or had your accountant or other non-attorney draft incorporation paperwork for you, this option reviews everything, corrects and supplements missing paperwork and provides the same consulting on structuring and training on formalities we would provide if we did the incorporation from the start.
  • Review of a commercial lease
  • Trademark clear & register package ($1500 value). Includes preliminary clearance and registration 

NOTE: All government filing fees and third party costs incurred are not included in the SuperCare Plans

Resolve Now


I'm excited to offer this unique money-back promise for dispute resolution services.  My confidence in offering this comes from serveral years of working in and around conflict and helping people successfully navigate out of intractable conflicts, first as a lawyer, then as an effectiveness coach beginning in 2008, and then as a mediator starting in 2014.  I've helped business partners, landlord-tenants, employer-employees, neighbors, and couples find their way through conflict and even help many use the experience to learn and grow personally with new skills and understanding of human nature and effective communications.      

Please visit my dispute resolution website to learn more...  

BootCamp Details


This bootcamp will teach bootstrapping entrepreneurs the essentials about law, particularly how to "get legal" from a lean perspective.  This is specifically for bootstrapping companies (i.e your budget for legal work is always "not enough") who need to cut corners and get creative. 


One session = $65

One day = $175

Both days = $290


Where:  Indie Business Central:  2833 Central Avenue NE, Minneapolis, MN 55418



Session 1:  SAT  12:30-2:00pm
Session 2:  SAT  2:15-3:45pm
Session 3:  SAT  4:00-5:30pm
Session 4:  SUN 12:30-2:00pm
Session 5:  SUN  2:15-3:45pm
Session 6:  SUN  4:00-5:30pm



Session I – Understanding liability and risk-taking in your business

  • Learn how to think about and assess risks
  • Using contracts to shift, cap and stop liability
  • How "Incorporating" does and does not limit liability
  • Buying and using Insurance to pay for liability
  • How to think about regulation and liability from a "lean" perspective 
  • Simple steps every business owner should take to avoid infringing others’ rights
  • Practical wisdom for preventing liability

Session II - Get Smart About What's in Writing

  • When to put things in writing, and when not to
  • When emails, notes and other communications may create a contract unintentionally
  • Learn the five most important sections in every contract
  • Overview of the four most common business agreements (non-compete/non-disclosure agreements, commercial leases, consulting agreements and owner control agreements)


Session III – Avoiding common problems with independent contractors and employees

  • The importance of distinguishing between contractors and employees
  • What every independent contractor agreement should contain
  • When and how to use employment agreements
  • Reducing employment litigation risks
  • Avoid becoming liable for your workers’ harmful conduct


Session IV – Creating Great Business Relationships

  • Negotiate wisely to leverage what you need without killing the deal
  • Communicating effectively in deal-making
  • Common problem areas with partners, investors, vendors/distributors, and contractors
  • Special care and handling of customers/clients
  • Structuring deals and knowing when to bring in the lawyers and accountants
  • Resolving disputes and avoiding escalation into lawsuits

Session V – Protect your brainpower, ideas and creative work product

  • Protection using intellectual property laws (patents, copyrights & trademarks)
  • Using contracts and Trade Secret protection for further protection
  • Naming and brand protection basics
  • A teaser on licensing your ideas or creative works to others
  • The world of enforcement and “cease and desist” letters

Session VI – Less Talked About, but Important Topics for Bootstrapping Business

  • An alternative to startup and growth; buying your competitors
  • Avoiding lawsuits for unfair competition and business torts
  • When and how do-it-yourself lawyering works best
  • How to shop for and work with attorneys to maximize your dollars
  • Managing warranties and proper warranty disclaimers
  • Beware of false advertising and consumer protection laws
  • Managing your reputation online and off
  • The end game: selling, liquidating, bankrupting and/or selling the business


Be a Wise Consumer of Legal Help


Unlike other purchases, it is very difficult to determine the quality of a legal product when hiring an attorney.  It's not as though you can pick up the latest Consumer Reports to find out what track record an attorney has.  If you're lucky, you have a trusted friend or colleague with extensive first-hand experience with an attorney.  More likely, however, referrals are given because someone knows someone who knows someone, and virtually nothing is known about the referred attorney.  In fact, some business groups require their members to make referrals only to other members of the group, no matter how bad or unknown the services of that person may be.  Even if the referral is based on someone's legitimate good experience, the attorney may know nothing about your particular matter.  Thus, even with a strong referral, your search is not over; you still need to interview the attorney.

It is shocking how few clients ever ask even the simplest questions of their attorney before hiring him/her.  Some clients never even ask how much the attorney charges, while the vast majority ask about fees only, and nothing more.  For this reason, most attorneys are not used to being asked any questions, and some may take slight offense.  Such a reaction may not suggest they are hiding anything or that they are bad attorneys.  It may mean, however, the attorney doesn't like being questioned, which could be a little problematic.  Here are some questions you should consider asking any new attorney you hire, or any attorney you've been working with for a while, but are considering asking to do something in a different area.  Not all questions may be of concern to you, and there may be questions not listed here that are  important to you, so by all means ask them.



Experience is a valued commodity in an attorney.  However, asking how long the attorney has practiced law isn't necessarily going to tell you much.   An attorney with many years’ experience in real estate isn't necessarily the best choice to draft a business partnership agreement.  However, if you've received excellent service from an attorney in one area, chances they will try and bring that same level of quality to the new area, even if they don't know all the ins and outs of the new area.  Nonetheless, it is worth asking what the attorney's experience is with a particular matter in order gauge whether they have done anything remotely similar.


If your attorney has a specialty in the specific issue for which you are seeking help, all the better.  However, beware that attorneys cannot use the word "specialty" or anything that implies a specialty unless a certification in that area is available, which is almost never the case.  Instead of looking for "specialty" ask what percentage of the attorney's practice is involved in the area in which you need assistance.   If it's an obscure area, then even 1 prior experience may represent a good understanding of that area with respect to other attorneys. 


You must realize too that each legal matter is very specific to the facts and circumstances of that matter, so it is unlikely any attorney has seen a matter just like yours.  Shop for general familiarity in an area, not specific understanding.  And, keep in mind that even an attorney with experience in your area will most likely have to do some legal research, because the law is constantly changing.


When inquiring about experience, pay attention to the kinds of clients your attorney has served, not only whether they have done similar transactions.  What may seem like a standard agreement in one context may have nuances in a different context.  This is especially true where the context involves rapidly changing technology.  For instance, some attorneys have created a niche out of Internet law, because many of the old ways of doing things have new twists and implications when you try to do them on the Internet.

Finally, it is worth noting that experience should not be relied on as the only factor when shopping around.  An astonishing number of shoddy attorneys have been in practice for years. Nonetheless, inquiring about experience is a good first question, and should be an important factor when choosing an attorney.


A common answer would most likely refer to the attorney's reputation and years of experience.  That's fine, but reputations are virtually unverifiable, given attorney-client confidentiality issues. Plus, there is a tendency for "reputation" to be used as a synonym for visibility rather than quality of performance.  

Good answers to this question should go beyond just the attorney's years of experience.  Ideally, the attorney has worked with businesses of similar size, in a similar industry or in a highly related industry.  Beyond this, smaller law firms can usually brag about better personal service.  Larger law firms can brag about handing matters that may require huge teams of legal staff, such as in complex litigation.  Keep in mind that it is unethical for attorneys to site their successes in a way that implies you will have the same successful result, because each legal matter is different.


More and more, people are handing their own legal matters using self-help materials available from publishers such as Nolo Press in order to save money.  In most instances, even if you pursue your own legal matters, you will still want an attorney to provide input on the legal matter you are pursuing, such as the overall strategy you're using, or an occasional answer to a specific question.  Thus, you will want to select an attorney who is willing to acknowledge the validity of self-help legal strategies in general.

Keep in mind a good attorney may legitimately believe that the particular legal issue you are trying handle on your own isn't one that easily lends itself to self-help legal work.  As long as the attorney doesn't belittle or discourage self-help work in general, you may still have a good attorney.  One question to ask in that case, would be whether the attorney has ever assisted self-help clients before.  At a minimum, a good answer to this question should be logical, and shouldn't simply rely on a cliché such as "anybody who represents themselves has a fool as an attorney," as a way of discouraging self-help representation.


The number of clients that hire attorneys without even asking what they charge is astonishing.  Among business attorneys in this region, a client can expect to pay anywhere from $150/hr for a new and un-specialized attorney to $600/hr for an experienced and specialized attorney.   Most business matters can be handled for between $175-$325 per hour.


Similarly, it is important to ask how many hours the attorney expects to spend on your legal matter.  Estimates are not binding, but attorneys often feel pressure to not exceed the estimate by too much.

Once you've established the general rate for an attorney, it can't hurt to simply ask if they would consider reducing that rate.  Often attorneys will reduce their rates for a good cause. So, if you have a good cause, go ahead and pitch it (very briefly). Also, if you are the type of client that is likely to use the attorney frequently in the future, you may be able to negotiate a lower rate because the attorney saves time in the future with marketing.


If you find an attorney serving many clients that are just like you, the attorney is more likely to be familiar with some of the circumstances surrounding your business, and thus may be in a position to more effectively give you good advice.  However, most attorneys don't serve one type of client, and if you find one that does, it may be worth paying a little more for that attorney. 


If you're a small or medium sized, owner-operated business, watch out for attorneys that serve mostly large corporate clients.  Such attorneys are not used to the limited legal budgets of smaller companies, and they have a tendency to over-lawyer legal matters.  (Read more about )


SuperCare Service Plan

More & more clients prefer prepaid legal service plans:

  • Regular check-in meetings
  • Unlimited quick calls
  • Huge fee discounts
  • Unique flexible service choices


Read More