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Orrick’s Free Term Sheet Generator and Forms Library Aimed at Entrepreneurs

Posted Jul 28, 2009 1:54 PM CDT
By Sarah Mui

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Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe announced last week that it is offering a free online "start-up tool kit" for entrepreneurs.

Lowell Ness, a partner in Orrick's Silicon Valley office, said in a press release that the move was in response to having "seen a spike in the number of start-up companies." The term sheet creator "generates an Answer File that can be saved locally and shared with Orrick attorneys for upload into Orrick’s even more robust internal document automation tool," the release says.

Wilson Sonsini and Linklaters offer a similar free online service.

Carolyn Elefant posits that BigLaw trends like these could have an impact on solo practitioners.

"Orrick's freebies help it capture a segment of the market which either couldn't afford to hire Orrick or if they could, would not have been worth Orrick's time," Elefant wrote at MyShingle.com. "Likewise, Orrick could charge far less to eyeball a completed form which it prepared itself then if the firm were to begin the incorporation from scratch (in which case, it would have to invite the client to the office, interview the client, gather the data and prepare the incorporation papers). Sounds well and good, until you realize that some of the clients that Orrick is capturing are those which may have previously used a local law firm for routine transactional matters."

However, Elefant plainly states in the post that she doesn't oppose this model. "No matter the motive behind free (whether it's sheer gratis or an effort to grab a share of market), I support any measure that increases potential clients' choices and expands access to law."

The other primary part of the tool kit is a library of start-up related forms. Both Ken Adams at AdamsDrafting and a commenter at Legal Pad note that these forms would be more useful as easily modified Word documents; they are currently in PDF form, Adams wrote.

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