1) Layoffs are common place (http://techcrunch.com/layoffs/ gives current layoffs at 350,299 since August 2008). This includes lawyers and patent attorneys who need work — http://bit.ly/cEcGVD;
2) Startups are one way of getting through this downturn; startups can use help with patents, legal advice and direction but are strapped for cash;
3) Lawyers who are starting out on their own, laid off from the big firms or "between jobs" represent an emerging sector of the legal
4) Startup law firms or out of work lawyers are a cost-effective option for start-ups with a lower cost base than the big firms but with the relevant big-firm expertise;
5) There is government funding to assist start-ups with IP protection (in Australia it includes Comet Grants and EMDG grants http://bit.ly/daDpqi), reducing the hurdles for startups to seek IP protection.
How can lawyers and tech startups collaborate to help? We have web based tools which can connect:
1. Startup X with Attorney Y as a node;
2. Keep communications privileged and/or confidential; and
3. Provide an unlimited number of nodes (i.e. set up an unlimited number of startups with different attorneys).
I went solo 4 years ago & have not looked back (http://www.1p.com.au). We can, along with others, offer what we learnt in going solo, then growing, to provide greater options to those who are laid off. We are small, but we can help!
We can use technology to help establish relationships between tech startups and attorney/law firm startups with the right expertise.
First, we need attorneys who are interested to contact us so we have resources to refer to tech startups.
As a profession, we believe that it is worth working together to help. Collectively, let’s help!
In Australia today is Harmony Day which is a great day to put forward this initiative http://www.harmony.gov.au/"