Business Transactions

Moving from home office to commercial space is a big leap in the life of a small business. The obligations you take on in a commercial lease can become your largest single monthly expense…and your largest single exposure to risk. Patricia found this out the hard way. Her fragrance and cosmetics business was growing. As […]

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Post image for Doing Business with Nonprofits: Part 2

There’s more to doing business with your nonprofit organization than just the disclosure required for “interested transactions” and avoiding a conflict of interest when making decisions on the organization’s behalf. As a board member, your status is similar to a trustee. The organization’s money is not yours to spend as you please. You are a […]

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Post image for Doing Business with a Nonprofit Organization When You’re on the Board

A common suggestion for effective networking is “Get involved.” So we join organizations and nonprofit groups with the hope that, as we serve in a leadership capacity, we are also piquing the interest of others who might want to use our services–or be willing to refer us to others who do. When the opportunity does […]

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Picture this: You’re sitting at your favorite watering hole with a gal pal (or guy friend) and are totally charged because you came up with an a-m-a-z-i-n-g new idea for a product. So amazing you cannot believe it. It fills a void in the market, it’s easy to ramp up, your brain is already brimming […]

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A simple solution? Who says there’s a problem with verbal agreements? As a lawyer who has had to litigate contract cases involving verbal agreements, I say, “I do.” Do you remember playing the game “telephone” as a kid? Where you are supposed to repeat the exact phrase that the person on your left whispers into […]

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Post image for Business Law Basics: Contract Essentials

Today, I feel vindicated. I just came across Laura Bell’s post, “Business Law Basics,” which reminds me of my apartment after it’s cleaned: neat, fresh and pleasant. Her point, delivered gently, is that too many entrepreneurs do deals without having a written contract. It’s like bringing a knife to a gunfight: You may be prepared […]

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Copying contracts from the Internet is a bit like wearing your old cousin’s hand-me-down dresses . . . in order to walk into a bee’s nest (an incongruous image, I know): yes, you’re “covered,” but the style is outdated and they usually don’t fit you well. Plus, they won’t provide you with the protection you […]

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Technology is a wonderful thing – sometimes. But, as one of our clients (“Samantha”) discovered, technology can create its own pitfalls. It’s a nasty surprise when the document you thought you negotiated doesn’t say what you had intended. Last year, Samantha independently negotiated the sale of her business to a multinational, publicly traded corporation. Within […]

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Post image for Evaluating a Franchise’s Fine Print

Be sure the business you’re buying is a strong, profitable brand with an untroubled history. Picture this: It’s Day One of your business. You have a business plan. Your operations manual is in place. You know your suppliers. Your branding has already been done and the business model has been tested, so you know it’s […]

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Can you force someone to sign a confidentiality agreement after you’ve disclosed sensitive information? Or after they’ve already done the work for you? No. To use an old farm expression, that’s like “closing the barn door” after the horse is gone.” I discuss a colleague’s tale in the video, below. She was a subcontractor on […]

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