Shulman Hodges & Bastian LLP

January 2015 Archives

Debt relief options for California business owners

If you're a business owner with debt troubles, then you're not alone. The risks associated with running a business are high, and bankruptcy laws take that fact into account. Heavy debt obligations may necessitate filing for bankruptcy, but depending on your particular situation, you may have a number of options for out-of-court solutions.

'Smart shirt' company sues multiple parties for patent infringement

We've discussed before how entrepreneurs have enjoyed success in taking patented technology from university research labs to the marketplace. Research departments have begun allowing potential buyers exclusive access to technology so buyers can weigh the risks before purchasing. You can read more about this matter in our previous post, "Protecting intellectual property: The university connection."

Will an out-of-court workout settle your business debts?

There is always risk in starting or purchasing a business. If things don't go as planned and your business is facing insolvency, then the bankruptcy system in the United States provides options for a fresh start. Bankruptcy can be a key component in helping business owners keep their companies intact or move on to new opportunities.

State Senate bill would curb frivolous disability-access claims

In a couple of our previous posts, we discussed the ongoing issue of small businesses being hit with frivolous lawsuits for alleged non-compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). California law differs from other states' laws with regard to these kinds of legal claims, and California businesses have been forced to settle ADA claims rather than challenge them. The problem is that settling is often less expensive than fighting a frivolous claim.

Complexity of professional liability lawsuits requires strong representation

Individuals and companies take out errors and omissions insurance policies (E & O insurance) in case negligence occurs during their handling of a matter for a customer or client. Without an E & O policy, a professional who provides services or advice could have to pay the entire cost of defending against another party's negligence claim, as well as any damages awarded as a result of the claim if it is attributable to the negligence of the person that provided the underlying service. Professional liability insurance such as an E & O policy is purchased in addition to general liability insurance, which only covers certain kinds of harm such as property damage and personal injury.

Ensure that your executive employment contract will stand up to scrutiny

Everyone wants job security, and people may assume that executives have plenty of it. That is not necessarily the case, however, as executives can be hit with job loss for any number of reasons. Maybe share prices drop, or the company merges or is bought. Maybe there is a push for a change in business culture. These things happen, and they happen often.

Judge: Energy Future not required to include trust fund in Chapter 11 plan

Businesses that are restructuring through Chapter 11 bankruptcy may have to address a range of liability issues not only from creditors in the business world, but also from current and future personal injury claimants. Complex legal factors have to be considered before a judge decides that Chapter 11 protects a company from future injury claims, such as those being pursued against Energy Future Holdings Corp.

How can a buy-sell agreement protect California business owners?

Business owners may need to sell or dissolve their companies for any number of reasons: retirement, divorce, disability, bankruptcy, disputes with partners, or just the desire to do something different. Whatever the reason may be, you'll need to cover your legal bases if you intend to sell all or part of your business.

Small businesses claiming Google owes them money

Business owners are likely to agree that if your company does work worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, it should get promptly paid.  And if payment is not prompt, it should be as soon as possible. But one California company says Google is refusing to pay nearly $1 million owed for ads placed with Google's AdSense software.

Some California employers can expect higher insurance premiums in 2015

According to the California HealthCare Foundation, since 2002, workplace health insurance premiums in California have risen 185 percent, far outpacing the state's inflation rate of 33 percent. This increase in employers' health insurance rates is expected to continue even as medical spending is down and uncompensated care has decreased significantly.

New York company seeks to enforce non-compete in California

Some states enforce non-compete agreements, whereby employees agree not to compete with their employer for a period of time or share trade secrets after leaving the company. California is not a state that enforces such agreements, but New York is.

Shulman Hodges & Bastian LLP
• 100 Spectrum Center Drive, Suite 600 • Irvine, CA 92618
• Local: 949-340-3400 • Fax: 949-340-3000 • Map & Directions
or contact us at 949-427-1654

Shulman Hodges & Bastian LLP
• 3550 Vine Street, Suite 210 • Riverside, CA 92507 
• Local: 951-275-9300 • Fax: 951-275-9303 • Map & Directions
or contact us at 949-427-1654