Website - Do I need a lawyer?


5

In the next few days I want to start a gaming network.

Now I have written everything by myself and I am wondering about legal issues.

For example: Payment, User-agreement, TOS?

I currently live in Germany, do I really need to hire a lawyer before I can publish my gaming network?

What alternatives do I have?

Legal Website Lawyer

asked Aug 24 '12 at 22:18
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Maik Klein
126 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll
  • Since you've already written everything, you've saved yourself a LOT of lawyer fees. Now that it's just a matter of reviewing what you wrote, you should really be able to get a lawyer's opinion for a much smaller sum than if you had gone to see one empty handed. But now imagine that in everything you wrote, there are just 2 or 3 things that could may be cost you a lot later: wouldn't it make sense to have a lawyer point those out now, for very little money? Unless you absolutely know what you're doing with legal contracts, it'd seem wise to get a pro's review before you launch. – Frenchie 8 years ago

5 Answers


3

You should, at a minimum, have a relationship with a lawyer in case you need one down the road. If users are paying to use your site then you could have liability issues - you'll want to make sure that your various Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, etc are written in such a way as to minimize your potential liability.

You don't specify, but it's possible based on your industry that you'll have additional issues. Gaming (that is, connected to gambling and games of chance) has rather significant legal issues. If you are operating an unlicensed site, then you may have issues with payment processors. Licensed, you'll have to have a lawyer (been there, done that - you don't really want to tackle that on your own).

answered Aug 24 '12 at 23:05
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Elie
4,692 points
  • Should I write the Terms of Use , Privacy Policy by myself? Well I make it a little bit different, I pay my customers for creating content. I just want to be safe that they don't abuse the system, or law me for changing the rates. And should I look for a local German lawyer or someone that I can contact via internet/phone who is specialized in the internet? – Maik Klein 8 years ago
  • Where is your business registered? You want a lawyer who specializes in your area, who knows the laws of the jurisdiction that your business falls under. – Elie 8 years ago

4

No, you don't need a lawyer. You will have to do some other things first, like launching your service and getting people to use it.

I have used a low-cost legal service in the U.S. to handle my legal issues. Mostly this has been asking many questions and being careful not to do things that create legal problems. For example, you should have a terms of service that tells people they are using the service at their own risk.

answered Aug 25 '12 at 10:14
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B Seven
234 points

2

The WordPress terms of service are licensed Creative Commons Sharealike:
http://en.wordpress.com/tos/ This applies to California not Germany, but it could be a good start. Maybe a similar project in Germany has a ToS you can review?

answered Aug 27 '12 at 07:15
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Nw Architect
136 points

1

I would definitely have a lawyer look over what you have written. I am a lawyer and believe me, it will cost you much less to pay a lawyer now to look over what you've done, before you actually start your network, and fix any mistakes than it will to hire a lawyer in the future to fix those mistakes after you've started your network.

You don't have to hire a lawyer now, but it is wise to do so and it'll save you a lot of money in the future.

answered Aug 27 '12 at 05:52
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User6492
1,747 points

1

You're being in Germany is a bit of bad news. Germany is the most sue-happy country in Europe. There are even specialized lawyer agencies throughout the country that do nothing else but troll local businesses using many loopholes in the local law.

What I'm saying is that it would be wise for you to sooner (better than later) register an LLC (if your project gets any traction) but not in Germany instead in some other country. Then you won't be obliged by the law to display your home address in Impressum and local lawyer trolls won't be able to get anything from you.

For the moment the best advice is to consult a local lawyer concerning legal documents or (if you write them yourself) review similar agreements specifically from German sites. You'll find there some unique shit that doesn't exist in other countries.

Addition: I totally forgot that to register an LLC in Germany you have to put 25.000 Euros on the table as the backup capital. Not everybody has that much money. In France it's about 8.000 Euros but from what I heard from some people who tried entrepreneurship in France, it requires strong nerves to deal with their bureaucracy. In Spain it's about 3.000 Euros and I haven't heard much of a complaining. Anyway, I'm not an expert and you should certainly look around and research various countries in your neighborhood (and perhaps farther away like Hong Kong or something).

answered Aug 29 '12 at 05:56
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Visitor From Down The Street
92 points

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