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In case you missed it, Kanye West dropped some knowledge regarding the perks and perils of being an entrepreneur. To wit: "If you are an entrepreneur you may have debt and lawsuits #facts." The assertion came a week after the artist admitted to being $53 million in debt.
But just because Kanye included the irrefutable hashtag, does that mean his tweet is actually correct? Are lawsuits and debts facts of entrepreneurial life?
When discussing his debt, Kanye also tweeted, "I don't have enough resources to create what I really can..." This is undoubtedly true for most small business owners and creators. Which is exactly why we have small business loans and venture capital. Most of us lack the disposable income to bring our idea to market or even open up our own shop, so we require a little bit of help to get going.
And whether you take out a small loan from your local credit union, or secure billions in startup or bridge financing, that's a debt. That debt, however, can be carried by your company and, hopefully, can be repaid through profits or equity interest in the company. Debt doesn't have to be a bad thing, so long as your company can repay it.
Unfortunately, Kanye might be right about the lawsuits as well. Not every business will get sued, but litigation might be a fact of life for many companies, especially as you grow. While there may not be a way to avoid lawsuits entirely, there are ways for startups to minimize their litigation risks, mostly by avoiding some common mistakes when incorporating.
The other common areas of business litigation are employment and intellectual property. Knowing how to manage your employees and how to defend your company's ideas are central to starting a business, and are issues entrepreneurs will almost always have to deal with. (Knowing how not to Twitter is something you can learn from the rest of Kanye's feed.)
But just because debt and lawsuits come with the entrepreneurial territory, doesn't mean they have to derail your business. Having the right commercial attorneys on your side can help.
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