I am starting an independent video game studio. I have a team of around half a dozen people who are currently at work on our first game.
I'm not comfortable advertising the game under the name of the studio since it is not yet a legal entity, so I have decided to form an LLC.
My issue now is how to keep my team of 6 workers as volunteers, not paid employees. The studio will not have income until the game comes out, and I am currently funding the studio/game out of pocket. I can't afford to pay these people out of pocket as well.
At present, everybody is volunteering their time and we have an informal agreement that we will split profits evenly when the game is released.
Can I legally "employ" my team as volunteers? What does this require contractually to be legal/fair?