AdobeStock_273133653-300x200California business owners face many different types of litigation. It is important to mitigate the risk of liability by consulting with a California business litigation attorney before your business is even established. The experienced California business litigation lawyers at Structure Law have helped entrepreneurs in all types of industries protect their companies from preventable losses. What follows are some of our tips to protect your business from litigation.

Have a business litigation attorney in California draft an operating agreement.

An operating agreement is not required to form a business in California. As a result, some business owners make the mistake of starting business operations without them. Without an operating agreement, the business is exposed to litigation and liability. An experienced business lawyer can draft an agreement that will reduce the likelihood of future liability. According to the Small Business Administration, an operating agreement sets the rules that guide a company’s decisions. Having an operating agreement can set decision-making processes that reduce the likelihood your company will face litigation. This agreement can even reduce the risk of future costly conflicts between owners of the company.

AdobeStock_219561092-300x200Tokenization is the process in which you replace sensitive data such as a credit card number with a non-sensitive equivalent known as a token, and real estate tokenization refers to creating tokens on the blockchain and assigning them to real estate properties that already exist or are currently under construction. Tokens may represent an interest in real estate but can also raise capital for development investments.

If you are new to the tokenization process, you will understandably have a lot of questions about how it works and what you can do. You will want to make sure you are working with an experienced Silicon Valley blockchain attorney at Structure Law Group, LLP, who can guide you through the entire process and help you achieve the results you desire.

Real Estate Problems Tokenization Can Solve

AdobeStock_398358954-300x200Most businesses in California have confidential and valuable information to protect. Ensuring its protection is often a vital priority. In the ordinary course of business, companies will enter into numerous consulting agreements, service agreements and strategic alliances. These agreements are best made with the advice of a Los Angeles employment attorney who can help protect proprietary information by drafting enforceable non-disclosure agreements.

NDAs and best practices

The proper use of NDAs and noncompete clauses is to protect your company’s valuable proprietary information. NDAs can be used to safeguard trade secrets, and this is their preferred mode of operation. Nonetheless, if your company wants to protect trade secrets, you must show that you made some effort to protect those secrets. Informing hires that they will have access to proprietary trade secrets and signing an agreement not to divulge those trade secrets makes the effort enforceable and shows your company took measures to protect their intellectual property.

AdobeStock_507078931-300x169In the twenty-first century, information is power. Businesses are facing unprecedented challenges in the race to create, maintain and protect information. These challenges have become painfully obvious in recent years. Business owners have had to move their operations to an entirely remote format while still maintaining cybersecurity. Cybersecurity has been breached in multiple brazen attacks against some of the country’s largest companies. Information security can no longer be taken for granted by any successful business. The key to success starts with the right human infrastructure within your organization. The right Chief Information Officer can protect your company’s confidential client information, intellectual property, and trade secrets to prevent the legal liability and bad publicity that comes with a data breach.

How Corporate Information Changed During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The global economy has become increasingly interconnected in the early twenty-first. Business moved online as companies have expanded their reach across the world. For most companies, however, these online operations were merely supplemental to a workforce that primarily operated in person. All of that changed with the coronavirus pandemic. Suddenly, businesses were forced to move their operations entirely online if they wanted to survive. Data had to be secured to allow employees to work remotely via Zoom, Skype, WebEx, Facetime, and other video conferencing services. Two+ years into the pandemic, it seems clear that remote work will become more and more popular in the years to come. Businesses must find a way to facilitate this major change while ensuring the security of their data.

AdobeStock_413139303-300x200Residential tenants have many more protections than commercial tenants because residential tenants have less bargaining power, or so the law presumes. It is, therefore, much easier to evict a commercial tenant than a residential one. After all, the employees will still have a home to go to post-eviction.  Under California law, the power shifts to the landlord in these agreements. Nonetheless, disputes tend to harm both parties, and resolving them tends to be a matter of coming up with a better agreement. Still, it’s important to understand your rights as both a tenant and a landlord when it comes to commercial leases. In this article, our San Jose real estate attorney will discuss how to manage commercial landlord-tenant disputes.

Eviction

There is no guarantee of habitability; a commercial tenant has limited options when it comes to leveraging a landlord to make repairs. Rent cannot be withheld, even in escrow, and there is no guarantee that repairs will be made unless it is in the lease. The covenant to pay rent supersedes all other considerations when it comes to commercial tenancies. A commercial landlord may send an eviction notice for a lease violation or the failure to pay and the commercial tenant will only have three days to respond. Clauses in the lease may prevent you from suing or prevent you from asserting rights as an evictee. Again, the language will be contained in the lease, so it must be read carefully.

AdobeStock_104337814-300x233Data breaches continue to make the news as more individuals have their personal information exposed to hackers. The hackers can then set up credit cards in a customer’s name, apply for government benefits, and potentially expose them to legal action. Companies traditionally have a duty of care to ensure the protection of sensitive information, and this is especially true for companies that operate in the health sector. Such lawsuits have become commonplace and can result in class action lawsuits against the company that negligently secured their customer’s vital information.

While companies do everything in their power to prevent hackers from accessing vital company information, these measures sometimes fail. It is therefore imperative for companies that solicit such information to have a San Jose business attorney to provide legal representation in the event of a breach.

Damage control

AdobeStock_302452099-300x200The hectic San Jose real estate market can present challenges for any landlord or tenant. With complicated commercial lease agreements, the stakes are often higher, and the legal issues are more complicated. The San Jose real estate attorneys at Structure Law Group are here to help business owners from all industries understand commercial leases. What follows are some of the most common issues that arise in negotiating lease terms.

Price Terms

Unlike residential leases, a commercial lease is not always paid at a fixed monthly rate. The rate can vary depending on market conditions. For example, a tenant might need a lower rate during the off-season when business is slow. Commercial landlords may be willing to negotiate variable rates depending on market conditions, time of year, supply chain disruptions, and other events. Some commercial leases are not paid at a fixed rate at all. Instead, the landlord will agree to take a set percentage of the tenant’s retail sales or a base rent plus the commission of sales. All of these price terms can be negotiated between the landlord and tenant. All of these terms are also subject to the California Civil Code, which prevents rent control on commercial properties. A San Jose real estate lawyer can help either party determine what pricing structure will best meet their needs and goals.

AdobeStock_118045560-300x199The coronavirus pandemic changed every aspect of life in California. Though the health crisis has improved, the long-term effects of COVID continue to affect us in many different ways. One of the big problems facing the legal profession is access to the state court system. Emergency procedures shut the courts down entirely in the early days of the pandemic. Soon, the courts operated on a limited basis, but even these short closures caused serious problems in a backlog that existed long before the COVID crisis. Reuters reports on the emergency COVID-19 orders that were rescinded in March 2022. After two full years, the California court system is no longer operating under restrictions. This change does not mean that it will be business as usual for every litigant seeking help in the courts.

Court Hearings

The state court system enacted many emergency procedures to protect the health and safety of all litigants during the COVID-19 pandemic. These steps included remote hearings, mask use, and restricting the number of people in a courtroom at the same time. These restrictions have been lifted as the health crisis improves. You are more likely to find normal court procedures in cases throughout the state. The courts’ limited operations during COVID have, however, created a backlog. As a result, it can take much longer to get a court date at all.

AdobeStock_141334922-300x200For many businesses, intellectual property will be their most valuable asset.  Licensing your IP to other businesses is a lucrative way to earn a passive income. Patents are the most common way to earn revenue from your IP, but copyrights and trademarks can also earn revenue.  Nevertheless, there are pitfalls here and you want to ensure that your interests are protected when you license your IP to another company.  In this article, Structure Law Group’s Los Angeles IP attorney will discuss how to protect yourself when licensing out your intellectual property.

IP license agreements and chain of title

Intellectual property is licensed out to another business using a licensing form.  The form, which can likely be downloaded somewhere online, creates a contract between you and the licensee for use.  However, license templates found online will not necessarily protect your company’s interests when licensing your IP.

AdobeStock_119264482-300x204Naming a business is a critical component of branding strategy for a person or entity involved in a California business. When the name of the business does not include the owner’s last name, a person or entity has to file a fictitious business name (FBN) statement with the office of the Registrar-Recorder or County Clerk in the specific county location for the business. This process is also known as registering a “Doing Business As” (DBA) or “Trade Name,” and a business without a location in California will have to register with the Clerk of Sacramento County.

The DBA requirement can be confusing for many people, but you do not have to handle everything on your own. Contact an LA business formation attorney with Structure Law Group, LLP for help with all your DBA needs.

When DBAs Apply