Let’s just say that six years ago, when you started your own company, your former employer sued you. And that two years ago you, had to sue a partner to get him out of the business.

If that’s true, and you’re the innocent victim, then even so, when talking to investors, be quiet about it. Don’t ever lie: When you are asked a specific question, tell the truth. Don’t ever hide it when it’s time for the details. But don’t bring it up first. No matter how well you explain it, it’s not going to make you look good.

Once, maybe, but twice? Well, maybe you had bad luck. Nevertheless, it looks bad.

Tim BerryTim Berry

Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software and Bplans.com. Follow him on Twitter @Timberry.