We probably learned pretty quickly that you should always register a product. It might seem like a bit of a big cost at the start, but it gives you the opportunity to have something to prove later should an issue arise.
Protecting our designs is critical. Intellectual property is an area that I think is often undervalued by designers.
If you can't afford a lawyer, just do it yourself. And we'd do a bit of both. Also, you've got to back yourself that one day you might be a bigger company than you are at that time. I think you've got to invest in that.