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Phoenix, Arizona, Business Law Blog

Intellectual property matters might require legal action

Protecting your company's intellectual property is important. These assets are part of your company's identity. There are several points that all business owners should know about protecting these vital assets.

One factor that is universal for all types is that confidentiality agreements can provide the basis for safeguarding your company's intellectual property. Having contractors and employees sign these documents details what is prohibited and what will happen if the agreement is violated.

What will happen if I breach my confidentiality agreement?

Arizona employees and contract workers who are bound by a confidentiality agreement will face severe consequences if it's proved that they broke that agreement. Here are some of the consequences that those accused of a breach of confidentiality could experience:

Termination: The breach of a confidentiality agreement is typically grounds for immediate termination and loss of employment.

Supplier contracts may help with business relationships

Running a business involves many different types of connections and actions from different people. A single company even typically needs to enlist the help of other companies in order to carry out their necessary operations. For instance, in order to create your product or carry out the services your company offers, you may need to form business relationships with vendors and suppliers.

This may seem like an easy task because all you have to do is find a company that offers the materials or services you need, right? Well, before you use just any manufacturer or supplier, you may want to take a close look at their business practices and how a potential company could benefit your business.

Many factors can impact the formation of a business

Forming a business is a big deal, but it isn't something that you can rush. You need to make sure that you are choosing the correct structure type for your company's needs and purpose. You also need to ensure that you are handling everything in a lawful manner. We are here to help you determine what you need to do to get your company up and running.

There are many different points that you might have to think about. One of these is that you need a location that is zoned for the business type that you are going to run. This is very important because you might end up with a useless property that doesn't support your business at all. It would then be a liability.

Resolutions for business disputes might come from negotiations

Many business disputes won't need to go to trial for a resolution. In many cases, the parties can negotiate a resolution. This is often a much faster and less expensive way to get the matter handled.

Here are some points you should remember about negotiating these business issues:

Do I really need to use an employee contract?

As the owner of a business, you certainly understand that you are at risk of a lawsuit from many sources, including your own employees. You may have many questions about the best way to protect yourself and your hard work from unnecessary trouble. While business advocates accept that a solid contract is one good way to ensure you and your employees are on the same page, you may wonder if taking such a step is really necessary.

In most cases, employees do not need a contract because their terms of employment comply with those determined by common law. Depending on the size of your staff and the industry in which you conduct your business, your employees may fall under this category. However, you may also have positions in your company for which a more comprehensive contract is a wise document to have your employee sign.

Estate plans are little different for business owners

Running a business is hard work. In many cases, the business owner will work tirelessly to try to grow the company. This doesn't leave much time for other things, but all owners should make time to ensure they have an estate plan established.

The estate plan for a business owner, especially if it is a small business of which he or she retains primary control over daily decisions, is an important document. It is likely going to contain more than just the standard will. We are here to help anyone who owns a business ensure that their wishes are clearly implied.

Using a mechanics' lien to get your just pay

As much as you may enjoy working in construction, owning your own company and taking on new projects, it is not a hobby. It is your livelihood, and receiving prompt payment is part of what makes the work pleasurable. You need to purchase materials, cover your overhead, pay your employees and support your family. When a client or project owner refuses to pay what he or she contractually agreed to, there is a ripple effect of financial trouble.

In the past, you have taken steps to claim the money your customer owes you. You probably sent an invoice followed by a reminder or two, a friendly email, or a phone call asking for prompt payment. If you still did not receive what the client owed, you had to weigh the pros and cons of taking the customer to court to get your money. The next time around, you may want to take advantage of your right to protect yourself with a mechanics' lien.

Businesses need to have a succession plan in place

Business owners often plan for a lot of different situations that might come up. There is one very important plan that they might not ever think about putting into place until it is too late -- a succession plan, which can be part of an estate plan. Anyone who owns a business needs to get this done as soon as possible or else there is a chance that the company and employees will suffer if something happens to the owner.

It is all too easy to become wrapped up in the daily decisions that come with running a business, but neglecting this single point could mean that all your hard work is for naught. If something happens to you and you don't have a succession plan in place, you might not be able to pass the company down to anyone and you might be hard-pressed to find a buyer.

Commercial real estate transactions require detailed attention

Commercial real estate is a big investment. If you are going to take this step, you must make sure that you are protecting your interests. In the absence of this, there is a good chance that you will make errors that can prove costly. We know that you don't want this to happen. We can help you to review these transactions so that you can make the best decisions possible.

There are many things to think about in these situations. One thing to watch out for is the zoning of the property that you are considering. If it is zoned for residential, you might be facing a rough process to get it rezoned. Learning about the possibility of this happening might help you determine if the property is worth the process.

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