All Legal Articles
If you find yourself in the unfortunate, but common, situation where a customer or client has not paid you for services rendered or for merchandise already delivered, you have several options: Make a final demand for payment; Take legal action by filing a lawsuit in small claims court if the amount owed to you falls within the limited amounts allowed; or Take legal action by filing a lawsuit in civil trial court. Any legal action you take against a customer would typically be filed i More »Suing a Customer for Nonpayment
Leases and rental agreements sound like the same thing, but they aren't. Here are the key differences every small business should understand. More »What's the Difference Between a Rental Agreement and a Lease for a Rental Property?
Making it easier to claim the home-office deduction could ensure self-employed Americans $13.5 billion in tax savings. Kristie Arslan says that's why Congress won't bother. More »Why Congress hasn't simplified the home office tax deduction
Franchisors need to understand the value of strategic trademark protection and the importance of swift trademark enforcement. This article takes a look at what franchisors need to be taking away from two recent (mostly) successful trademark infringement lawsuits. More »Trademark Infringement Headlines Offer Franchisors Important Lessons
If you have ever developed metatags or researched pay-per-click keywords to help your company's website rank for search results, you may have felt the urge to use the names of of your well-known competitors. If someone starts out looking for a competitor and ends up coming to you instead, not only is it good for your business, but it's one less loyal fan for the competitor. As it turns out, however, this might not be the best idea-at least not right now.In the early days of commercial use of the Internet (remember those days? They weren't that long ago. ... More »Can I Bid on a Competitor's Trademarks on AdWords?
I've seen enough cases of a former franchisee not de-branding after termination as required by their Franchise Agreement to know that this is a serious problem for franchisors. I've also seen more than enough cases of startups and, shall we say, "enterprising" individuals adopting domain names and "repurposing" content in ways that directly infringe on larger brands' intellectual property rights. Some do this intentionally; others do it unintentionally. ... More »Protecting Your Image and Intellectual Property Online
As illustrated by the Tilted Kilt restaurant franchise lawsuit, the importance of franchisor-franchisee separation and exposure to joint liability. More »Franchisor-Franchisee Independence and Joint Liability, Redux
Under the FTC Revised Franchise Rule, franchisors are required to update their FDDs annually. What the federal and state renewal deadlines mean for active and aspiring franchisors, as well as prospective franchisees. More »Get Your Franchise Audits and FDDs Done Early for Renewal Season
Many franchisees pay a percentage of revenues into a marketing fund, which the franchisor spends on marketing and advertising. However, the use of the money may not be disclosed properly, as Cold Stone Creamery's franchise association is claiming in its lawsuit. More »A Cold Stone Creamery case study
Four main issues all franchisors and franchisees should consider at the end of a franchise contract, including de-branding/re-branding, phone numbers, customer lists, and non-compete agreements. More »What happens when a franchise contract ends?
Through a last second deal with a deep-pocketed private equity investor, the once-celebrated Quiznos franchise has managed to narrowly avoid bankruptcy. More »Quiznos franchise narrowly avoids bankruptcy
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