The Comfort Calls Story: Organizing the Legal Structure for Your Startup

By Catherine Austin Fitts

Nearly every week, I have a subscriber or client tell me that they, a family member or someone they may help finance is starting a new business. Almost all of them are uncertain about how to create a legal structure for their business, one that reflects an effective governance and capital structure that can energize an enterprise from startup to successful operations.

My goal this week is to make that task easier for you and yours.

First, we will be speaking with entrepreneur Debbie Landers, from Hohenwald, Tennessee. Debbie started her career as a nurse, then founded a school at her husband’s church, then the Tennessee Association of Non- Public Academic Schools, not to mention starting a restaurant, leading the Financial Permaculture conference and serving as the President of the local Chamber of Commerce for several years.

Debbie had an idea for a very special company called Comfort Calls. However, this opportunity required setting up a legal structure and issuing and selling stock. So the Solari team helped Debbie design a legal structure for Comfort Calls, which she launched last year.

I will talk with Debbie about her evolution from having an idea to creating a board of directors, incorporating her company and issuing stock – what were the hard questions and how did she sort them out? What were her challenges in implementing her choices and how did she get them done?

Debbie and I will be joined by:

  • My attorney Carolyn Betts to discuss some of the critical legal issues that the Comfort Calls story demonstrates and which many start ups face; and
  • Entrepreneur and private investor Paul Ferguson to discuss the important issues that an angel investor or venture capitalist looks at when making a decision to invest in a start up or early stage company. Paul is also the Treasurer of the First Ever Solari Circle – a small investment club that Paul, Carolyn and I founded with seven other people in 2005.


Check the private blog after the show for a generic term sheet for a company legal and capital model using the Solari A/B Share model, checklists and a variety of links to compliment our discussion and to help get you going!

I will start with Money & Markets and Ask Catherine. For Let’s Go to the Movies, I recommend you check out a few episodes from the TV Series Shark Tank. ( Wiki on Shark Tank) Post your questions in the comments section for this blog post.

Talk to you Thursday!


  1. Will you be dealing at all with the issue of setting up a company in a non-US jurisdiction for purposes of international diversification and potential liability protection?

    Understand I ask this NOT to attempt tax savings but to operate in a compliant manner yet perhaps a little less under the thumb of an out of control U.S. bureaucracy as a potential side benefit.


  2. Roger:

    I don’t plan to cover non-US legal issues in my segment, and I don’t believe Catherine will either. This is a whole different kettle of fish, and there’s a lot to cover for US-based companies. Some of the things we will discuss would be generic to any company.

    — Carolyn Betts

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