Q: I need legal advice on hiring, starting an LLC, and creating legally binding contracts for a game development studio.
Hello. I am a game developer looking in to publishing my first big indie game. I have about 9 people working for me in the realm of composing music, creating art, and coding the actual game. Once we publish the game we are going to split the profit. We also want to stat a kickstarter.
Now, my question is. Do I need to start an LLC to have people work on my game and publish it legally? What are benefits and how much would it cost? If I dont need to do this, how do I make my contracts legally binding and how would I split profits?
Forming the legal entity itself is not expensive but there are many other matters to be taken care of, not only the agreements between the parties involved in the development process, but also copyrights and more. There are attorneys that specialize in this type of start up and can easily provide you with a list of what needs to be done and how (and will actually do it for you), and review what you already have. You will probably be charged a flat fee if you go with a firm that specializes on your type of start up, so you would know your total expenses upfront. Unless you already have in place good work-for-hire agreements, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible. The first time will probably be the more expensive, as subsequent project would have the process already laid out.
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