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Greenwich commercial and business law attorney

If you are a business owner, you know the vital importance of setting clear expectations for your employees. When a business is in its infancy and only has a small number of employees, you may be able to get away with verbally expressing rules and expectations to your workers. If you are heavily involved in the day-to-day operations of your business, it is easy to keep a watchful eye on employees to ensure that they are not exposing you to any liabilities. However, as your business grows and develops, the need for a written set of guidelines and expectations becomes critical. Creating an employee handbook that states employment policies, company rules, and how workers are expected to behave at work will help prevent employee-related disputes in the future.

Why You Need An Employee Manual or Handbook

An employee handbook contains a company’s practices, policies, and the legal rights and obligations of employees and their employer. Not only can this type of handbook protect you as a business owner legally, but it can also significantly improve the work environment. Many of us have had jobs where we were unsure of our role in the company or what was expected of us. It can be confusing and disheartening to be an employee and not feel like part of the team if other employees are not on the same page as you. An employee handbook can go a long way in establishing a culture of teamwork and professionalism at your company.

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Darien non-disclosure agreement attorneyBusiness dealings often involve the exchange of highly confidential information. A non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is an effective way for business owners and entrepreneurs to protect sensitive information from being shared or misused. An NDA is a legally enforceable contract that establishes a private relationship between two or more parties. The involved parties agree not to share or profit from confidential information to which they are made privy. NDAs, also called confidentiality agreements, are a valuable tool for businesses.

Non-Disclosure Agreements For Business Negotiations

Non-disclosure agreements can be used to protect sensitive information that is shared during business transactions, such as the buying or selling of a company. For example, if a business owner is interested in selling his or her company, he or she will almost certainly meet with potential buyers to discuss the business in detail. A potential buyer may have access to proprietary information, product designs, marketing strategies, trade secrets, business practices, and other information that could be used as leverage in other business dealings. Asking a potential buyer to sign an NDA prevents the buyer from misusing sensitive business information or sharing that information with others. If a party signs a confidentiality agreement and then violates the terms of that contract, the injured party has the right to seek financial compensation for breach of contract.

The two most common types of NDAs are unilateral NDAs and mutual NDAs. A unilateral NDA is a contract where only one party agrees not to disclose sensitive information. In a mutual NDA, all of the parties involved agree not to share certain confidential information.

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Fairfield County business injury liability attorney

As a business owner, you likely have contractors, employees, clients, customers, and other individuals visiting your property regularly. It is your obligation to ensure that your property remains a safe environment to conduct business and sell goods or services. Unfortunately, work accidents can happen anywhere, and many of these accidents involve injuries. A personal injury lawsuit can absolutely devastate a business, so it is important to reduce your potential personal injury liability as much as possible.

Focus on Preventing Accidents Rather Than Responding to Accidents

You probably take a great deal of pride in your business and want your property to be a safe, secure, and comfortable environment for everyone who visits it. It is crucial for business owners to take preventative measures to avoid customer or employee injuries. However, potential injury-causing hazards are not always easy to spot. You should walk through your property and identify any defects or conditions that could present a danger. Look out for the following conditions:

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Long Island Sound breach of contract attorney

Ideally, everyone would honor verbal promises or handshake agreements. Unfortunately, this is not the reality of the business world. Legally binding contracts are often needed to ensure that parties stay true to their word. When a party does not meet the expectations of a contract, you may choose to take legal action in the form of a breach of contract claim.

Three Main Elements

A contract can be thought of as a legally enforceable promise. Contracts vary significantly in their scope and complexity, but all contracts define certain rights and responsibilities for the involved parties. When one of the parties in a business contract fails to fulfill his or her responsibilities, the other party or parties may pursue a claim for breach of contract. There are several elements that must be present in a breach of contract lawsuit in order for the plaintiff to be awarded restitution. To win a breach of contract claim, the plaintiff will need to demonstrate the following:

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Long Island Sound business franchise attorney

Becoming a business owner can be one of the most meaningful career moves of your life. Owning your own business allows you to control how your business is run, decide how your employees are managed, and steer the business in the direction that you want. When buying a business, potential owners have two options: purchase a standalone business or a franchise location. There are both positives and negatives associated with purchasing a franchise business. It is important for anyone considering such a big purchase to research what owning a franchise business entails.

Franchised Businesses Have an Established Business Model

When a business becomes very successful, the owner may choose to franchise the company. This allows other private owners to purchase the rights to operate a franchise location of the larger parent company. Many first-time business owners find the option of buying an existing franchise location especially attractive. Unlike buying or starting an independent business, you will not need to create a business model from scratch when purchasing a franchise. An effective, reproducible business model already exists. In many franchise purchases, formal training from the parent company and ongoing support are also available. Of course, if you are someone who desires a great deal of freedom in how your business is run, you may not wish to be confined by a parent company.

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Connecticut real estate lawyersOver the last few years, the American economy has largely improved, but for many families, times are still quite tough. When an individual or family is experiencing financial hardship, they may reach a point where they must start selling or liquidating some of their assets—possibly including their homes. In some cases, a homeowner may need to sell his or her home for less than the amount that remains to be paid on his or her mortgage. Such a transaction is called a short sale, and it may be one way for a homeowner who is behind on mortgage payments to avoid foreclosure.

The Basic Requirements of a Short Sale

Selling a home in a short sale is a complicated process for a number of reasons. First, there are always challenges associated with selling a house. Next, because the sale price of the home will be less than what is owed on the mortgage, the amount left on the loan after the proceeds of the sale are applied—known as a “deficiency”—must be accounted for during negotiations. Lastly, a short sale is only a good option if all interested parties are on the same page and agree to the deal. In many cases, the most challenging element of the transaction is getting the lender to allow a short sale.

If you are trying to convince a lender to agree to a short sale, you will generally need to meet a few requirements:

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Norwalk business succession plan attorney

For a lot of business owners, their professional and personal lives can become intertwined. This is especially true for small business owners. Many of these businesses were founded by the current owner, while others may have been passed down through generations. Regardless of how a business was formulated, it is important to prepare for the next step by creating a succession plan. Business owners cannot run their business forever and must prepare for a future to avoid losing the business altogether. Delegating the livelihood you have created to another person can be difficult, but with the correct legal assistance, you can ensure that your business lands in the appropriate hands.

Who Can Take Over My Business?

There are five common ways in which a business owner transfers ownership of his or her company. Many business owners will choose a person with whom they are familiar to take on their business relations. This can include a current co-owner, a family member or heir, or a key employee who they think would best run the company. On the other hand, some owners wish to have an outside party, such as an entrepreneur, come in to bring new ideas to the table and avoid familial conflicts that can come along with passing your business to a relative. Businesses that have multiple owners can sell their ownership rights back to the overarching company. 

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Norwalk real estate attorney

Every state has its own laws regarding real estate sales. In some states, hiring a legal professional is optional for home buyers or sellers, but Connecticut is not one of those. In Connecticut, state law requires all home buyers and sellers to involve a real estate attorney in the process. You may be thinking, how would a real estate attorney help me sell or buy a house? However, having an experienced real estate attorney by your side can save you from making legal mistakes that could land you in legal and/or financial trouble later.

What Will My Real Estate Attorney Do?

You may think that buying or selling a home simply requires the signing of a contract and the handing over of keys, but there is much more to it. Real estate agents will establish the selling price and the terms in a contract between the buying and selling parties. The real estate attorney will review this contract and negotiate any repairs and adjustments that should be made to the contract. This is to ensure that everything is in order and is acceptable before officially completing the large sale or purchase.

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Fairfield County reverse mortgage attorney

Mortgage payments, like any large loan, can make homeowners anxious. Most people understand how mortgages work: an individual borrows money from the bank to help finance the house, then makes monthly payments to pay off the debt. The loan must either be paid off in full or the home must be sold, which ends the mortgage payments for that particular property. A reverse mortgage works the opposite way. This type of home loan converts a property’s equity into cash payments. Some homeowners select to receive monthly installments or a large lump sum all at once. The reverse mortgage process may be a viable option for certain people, depending on their situation. There are also some qualifications that must be met for an individual to be considered eligible for this financial opportunity.

Do I Qualify For a Reverse Mortgage?

Reverse mortgages are not available for all homeowners, especially not young ones. Those individuals wishing to take advantage of this type of loan must be at least 62 years of age and own most of their primary residence. It is possible to have an outstanding mortgage on the house; however, it should be less than 50 percent of the home’s value.

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Norwalk real estate foreclosure attorney

Going through a foreclosure is a situation that no homeowner expects or wishes to be in. Foreclosure is the process by which lenders recover an unpaid loan. The lender will repossess the property and resell it to make up for the monetary loss. In many cases, this happens to homeowners who fail to pay their mortgage on time. While this may sound like a harsh and sudden consequence, certain processes must be followed during foreclosure, providing homeowners with some notice before their home is taken away.

The Stages of Foreclosure

The four primary stages involved in foreclosure cases are:

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Long Island Sound real estate attorney

Liens are common in contracts with property and high-value assets, yet many people do not know what they are and what they do. A lien gives someone the right to another person’s property. These rights remain “dormant” unless debts are incurred on that particular property. The most common example is a home loan. When an individual borrows money to help pay off a home through a loan, the property itself becomes collateral. In other words, a person agrees to allow the lender to take his or her property through foreclosure if he or she does not pay the money owed on the house. 

Tax liens work in a similar fashion. Local governments and the IRS can use liens to collect unpaid taxes. These liens do not have a single property listed, but rather, all current and future assets are available. Local governments and the IRS can collect from bank accounts and are able to collect money before all other creditors.

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Stamford, CT contract drafting attorney

In all business relations, a contract should be written to ensure that all parties complete their end of the deal. Some businesses trust verbal agreements; however, those types of agreements are not always legally enforceable, as there is no written consent to back up a claim. While a contract does require agreement from both parties, it also creates formal obligations that can be enforced if necessary, while a verbal agreement does not. Regardless of your relationship with the other party, a legal contract is important to avoid future conflict and eliminate any gray areas that may exist.

Business Contract Necessities

Business contracts have elements that are required to make them eligible and enforceable in court. Much like marriage vows, business agreements have requirements that relate to the parties signing the contract and the agreement itself.

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Stamford, CT landlord or tenant attorneyThe “bad tenant” and “mean landlord” stereotypes have always existed, and while they may not always have issues, it is fairly common for a landlord and tenants to butt heads. Tenants have certain expectations for their living space and landlords have to attempt to please every tenant in one form or another. Small issues are bound to occur between the building owner and his or her residents, but sometimes the disputes become big enough to require legal representation.

Common Complaints About Tenants

Complaining occurs on both sides of the housing contracts. The following are common issues that landlords experience with their buildings’ inhabitants:

  1. Paying Rent Late: Most people have paid their rent late at least once in their life. This may seem like a minor inconvenience for landlords, but there is more behind the scenes. A landlord’s business relies on the cash flow from tenants. Without this money, it can affect his or her ability to maintain the building and pay overall utility bills to keep everything in working order. If rent is late, a landlord can take legal action against the tenant and start the eviction process if late payments become a habit.

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