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Is your doula business protected?

April 30, 2013

Doula Contracts

Today's Guest Blog Post is by Rob Turner.  Rob is a partner at Intown Law as well as a very supportive husband of a doula. YourDoulaBag is excited to work with Rob in setting up the Business Foundation Package.

In plain language: you have more protection when you operate your doula services through a business entity.

As your doula business advocate, we strongly encourage you to consider setting up a legal shield (in the form of an entity) to limit yours and your family’s personal/financial liability in the event of dispute.  Common forms of entities include limited liability companies (LLCs) and corporations.

Many doulas operate their doula services business as a “sole proprietor.”  A sole proprietor is where you are conducting business as yourself and without operating your services through an entity. For example: think of Bill Gates selling software services by himself and not through an entity; instead, he and others formed Microsoft Corporation to operate and sell their services.  Now if a customer is unhappy with their software and sues, Bill Gates won't lose his boat!

Operating any kind of business, including a doula services business, through a legal entity provides the business owners legal protection.  If all of the required formalities are followed, the company’s owners’ maximum financial exposure would be the amount of their investment in the company.

In today’s litigious society (people love to sue!), many times the person filing a lawsuit (called the plaintiff) will sue all parties involved in the “wrong” that has occurred to them – seeking to recover monetary payments from them (called damages).   We hope you are never involved in this situation, but it is not difficult to imagine complications arising from the birth (through no fault of your own), the parents being extremely dissatisfied with the outcome, and the parents suing all parties involved with the baby’s delivery – care providers, nurses, hospital – and doula.  In this example, if you are operating your doula business through an entity rather than as a sole proprietor you will have a greatly enhanced limitation on your personal liability. From the example above, you are less likely to lose your boat!


Need assistance with your business formation or doula contracts? Take a look at the Business Foundation Package.


2 Responses


July 31, 2015

I just wanted to say that I had a great experience with the Business Foundation Package… I was a little hesitant to spend the money on something that “could” be done on my own, but I’m glad I went for it. It was so helpful to talk through the process with someone as knowledgeable and supportive as Rob. Knowing my business is properly set up, and having professional, sound contracts has been a confidence booster for me going into interviews. Especially now that I have been able to use my contracts several times over the past few months, I am more sure I made the right call. Thanks for putting this package together!

Angela Rooney
Angela Rooney

May 02, 2013

How do you feel about purchasing liability insurance instead of an LLC? I was going to wait until I am certified to start an LLC. Do you think insurance is enough protection?

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