I can’t say that I have ever needed to reach out to an attorney, but, even I did, the thought of racking up significant hourly fees gives me pause. The situation is largely the same in Germany, where lawyers are not consulted in a reported 70% of the cases in which they would be required, as those involved feel the same sort of trepidation about the type of fees or quality of work that would come with doing so. That is why German startup LegalBase, which was founded in 2015, has set out to follow in the footsteps of American firm Legalzoom, which targets the American and British market, with a platform that simplifies the process of obtaining legal services online.
In terms of scope, LegalBase says that they offer assistance in a variety of fields, including employment law, corporate law, and trademark law. The service is pretty straight-forward, with users selecting a service, selecting a lawyer, and then paying upon completion of the task. Prices, which are fixed and startup from 150 Euro, vary depending on the type of service provided, with the fee arranged before any work is completed.
One notable aspect of LegalBase’s funding is that they have obtained from a bit of an unusual source. The startup recently closed a 7-figure round that included participation from Amsterdam and London-based VC fund Orange Growth Capital and Norwegian incubator Norselab, but which was actually led by LegalZoom. In addition to providing funding, LegalZoom’s President and COO, Frank Monestere, joined the startup’s board.
As LegalBase just launched a couple of weeks ago, they are, understandably, current reluctant to reveal how many users they have. They acknowledge that they have plans for expansion, but I am told that there are not really any specific targets at the moment.