(Photo by Tony Abraham)
When members of the Wilmington law firm Potter Anderson & Corroon attended Tech2gether during Delaware Innovation Week last November, it got them thinking about being more involved in the tech community.
As a result, the firm’s business and intellectual property groups announced a partnership with 1313 Innovation — both of which are located in Hercules Plaza — in an effort to share legal tips with entrepreneurs.
“We want to provide general suggestions,” said Janet Reed, an intellectual property partner at Potter Anderson. “It’s just an idea of providing a resource since we’re right here in the building, and it seemed like a really good fit.”
To kick off the partnership, there will be an event April 5 in which 1313 Innovation members will be given five minutes to pitch an idea and receive pointers from Reed along with Michael Whittaker and Jeffrey Safran, who are also Potter Anderson attorneys. Five entrepreneurs who aren’t members of 1313 will be chosen to also give pitches, and they can apply online for consideration.
Reed noted that the suggestions Potter Anderson lawyers will offer are general and will not be meant to serve as official legal advice.
Common questions entrepreneurs have that the attorneys might be able to help with involve business setup, how to structure communications to third parties without divulging confidential information, strategies for patents and branding and understanding labor laws, she said.
For now, Potter Anderson lawyers will plan on visiting 1313 Innovation once every couple of weeks, and depending on demand, Reed said those visits might be more or less frequent.
Megan Anthony, the community manager at 1313, says the incubator is excited about the partnership.
“Any way we can break down barriers for our startups and help them focus on building their businesses is our primary goal,” she said. “Having a legal team to help with those frustrating legal questions around starting a business, or IP, will be a huge benefit to these teams.”
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