You've turned your hobby of making candles or pet toys for friends, family and the occasional craft fair into a small business. You're selling your products through an online marketplace like Amazon or Etsy. You've probably never considered that anyone might sue you, but you can never be sure.
No one starts a business expecting to eventually be mired in costly litigation. Unfortunately, too many business owners end up fighting -- and sometimes losing -- court battles than can cost them dearly in money and reputation. Many of these lawsuits, particularly those involving employees, can be avoided by simply knowing the law and making sure that all of your employees, especially those in supervisory and human resources positions, follow it.
A person, group or business entity purchases enough shares of your company's stock to enable a hostile takeover or at least to have a say in your operations and management. They offer to let your company buy back the shares, but at a much higher price. In exchange, they won't continue with the attempted takeover and won't purchase any more of your stock. That's called "greenmail."
If your company is considering or in the process of acquiring another company, you may not have given much thought to that company's workers' compensation program -- or to the company's safety culture in general. This may be more relevant in industries where workplace injuries are common than in those where they aren't. However, employees can suffer injuries in any line of work.
Workplaces have become more relaxed in recent decades when it comes to what kind of clothing employees are allowed or required to wear. Gone are the Mad Men days where men wore suits and ties, and women wore dresses and skirts. Casual Fridays have given way to full-time casual dress in many offices where employees aren't regularly dealing with the public or clients.
If you own a business, your reputation is likely one of your most valued assets. These days, it's all too easy to damage a business's reputation -- often anonymously. Many times, competitors will take to Twitter or other social media sites to make derogatory and possibly false statements about a business.
These days, most new dads what to share the responsibilities of caring for their newborn child with the child's mother. Some companies are recognizing the importance of these shared parenting responsibilities and are granting equal amounts of leave to parents of newborn or newly adopted children regardless of the employee's gender.
Missouri has long been the venue of choice for business litigation with a lot of money at stake -- even when the litigants have no connection to the state. Missouri lawmakers are trying to put an end to that.
Owning a business comes with a lot of responsibilities. It is imperative that you make decisions based on what is best for the company. Unfortunately, there might come a time when you have some difficult choices to make if your company is facing a lawsuit. The goal, in this case, is going to have to be two-fold. You will have to try to minimize the impact that the legal matter has on your company while reducing the way that the preparation affects it.
You sit down with a potential business partner and the two of you come to an agreement. You shake hands. You agree to work together.