Dale M. Maas, Attorney at Law
888-680-3843 Wills, Trusts and Successions Real Estate and Business Litigation General Litigation and Appeals

Baton Rouge Business & Commercial Law Blog

Workplace problems and estate planning

Whether someone is having a hard time with regard to naming beneficiaries and figuring out how to split up their assets or they cannot decide which type of trust will suit their needs best, there are many different estate planning challenges that people may have to work through. Sometimes, people may be going through other difficulties in life, which can also get in the way of estate planning. For example, a tough divorce or problems in the workplace can also make estate planning complicated. Whether you are under a great deal of pressure at work or you recently found out that you will lose your job, it is important to prevent these issues from interfering with your approach to estate planning.

When hardships arise at work, people may become stressed out, depressed or feel as if they are too tired. These negative feelings can cause some people to postpone the creation of an estate plan, or they may cause some people to rush through the process without focusing on key estate plan issues sufficiently. Aside from the emotional considerations related to workplace challenges and estate plans, there are other ways in which job-related issues can impact someone’s estate plan. For example, an estate plan may need to be revised after someone loses their position or begins to earn a much higher income.

Is your will overdue for an update?

Creating a will is always a good place to start when getting your personal affairs in order and establishing your wishes for your estate, but it is unwise to leave a will unchanged for years. Unfortunately, many people believe that simply creating a will protects their rights and preferences for their estate, which is not always true.

If you created your will more than five years ago, or if you experienced major life changes after creating your will, it is wise to make time to review the document and update it. Failing to update your will as your circumstances shift over time may create inconsistencies between your written wishes and your actual beneficiaries and estate.

When a competitor accuses your business of wrongdoing

Business law encompasses many legal issues, from those which involve staff members and the formation of a business to matters involving business activity in a particular state. However, those which involve competitors can be especially tough for different reasons, and in some cases a competitor may even decide to take legal action. If your business has been targeted by one of your competitors, it is important to understand all of your legal options and handle the case in the most sensible manner, since there may be much at stake. In some instances, these cases are based on exaggerated details or claims that have been completely fabricated.

A competitor may have decided to move forward with litigation targeting your business for various reasons. Perhaps the owner of this business holds a grudge against your company and wants to get even or bring you down, or maybe there is a misunderstanding that resulted in litigation. Even when these cases are founded on valid claims, it is imperative to protect your business and work towards a more favorable solution. After all, the consequences of these lawsuits can be extremely damaging, not only with respect to finances and business operations but your company's reputation too.

Lawsuits targeting inexperienced business owners

Our law firm understands that some business lawsuits can be especially tough, such as those which target a new or inexperienced business owner. Perhaps you have recently launched a business and you are not familiar with certain legal obligations or you are unsure of how to handle a lawsuit. Sometimes, new business owners are especially likely to find themselves in this position, especially if they are not aware of the ins and outs of employment law. However, many have also been falsely accused of wrongdoing, and litigation can be stressful for any business owner (let alone one who has not been running a company for very long).

It is imperative to protect the future of your business by taking the right steps before, during and even after litigation. For example, you should be prepared for court if you are unable to resolve the issue(s) with those threatening legal action. When a lawsuit surfaces, you should have a clear understanding of all legal options and you may need to take corrective action following litigation. For example, if your business was taken to court over sexual harassment, discrimination or some other employee rights violation, and the person who filed suit against your business had a valid reason to take legal action, you may need to implement a training program and fire those responsible for the allegations.

How can I save my sinking company?

Businesses fail in Louisiana and across the United States at alarming rates every year. Yet, entrepreneurs continue to take the risk in hopes of coming out on top. The universal problem that tends to lead to business failure is lack of capital or cash-in-hand to keep operations running smoothly. However, there is often more to the story than just this surface result.

According to Forbes, businesses often fail because of poor management or even glitches that slow down business operations. The good news is that regardless of why your business is sinking, there may be a few ways to patch the leak and keep sailing.

Probate is not always bad

While estate planning in Louisiana, the term probate comes up fairly often. CNN Money describes probate as the legal process that takes place after a person passes away. The process entails verifying the authenticity of a will and then distributing assets. When there is no will, then probate court must make the decisions as to how assets are divided. It may sound simple enough, but probate can be costly in time and money.

 In addition to this, probate is a public process. As Forbes explains, anyone can look up the records to see what an individual’s net worth was at the time of their passing, what they owed, what they owned and how it will all be distributed. Individuals who value their privacy or would like to keep their beneficiaries’ inheritance out of public knowledge may consider avoiding probate. One way to avoid probate is by using trusts, while some assets avoid probate by operation of law.

How do I ensure I hire good real estate contractors?

Hiring reputable contractors in Louisiana is no guarantee that you will never become involved in real estate litigation. Even so, it is one way to prevent the likelihood of finding yourself in this position. But, how do you know if a contractor will provide high quality work and operate ethically?

Unfortunately, there is no foolproof way to know for sure. Nevertheless, there are some key features to look out for and easy steps you can follow. See a few of these below.

What do I need to know before purchasing commercial real estate?

The Louisiana commercial real estate market has come a long way since Hurricane Katrina and the floods of 2016. Even so, both new and seasoned real estate investors should take special care when purchasing commercial property. Here are some basic pointers to help get you started.

According to Forbes, hiring a structural engineer helps to ensure that you purchase buildings that are safe and in good shape. Here are just some of the tasks a structural engineer may complete on your behalf:

  •          Check for structural integrity
  •          Review surveys and inspection reports
  •          Conduct property condition assessment

Know what documents you need to start your business

Whether it's a startup out in the garage or a mom-and-pop restaurant in town, if you are starting a small business, you will first need to draft and file some basic business documents. This is in addition to obtaining all necessary city, parish, state and federal licenses and permits to operate.

If this is your first foray into the business world, it's easy to become overwhelmed and confused about where to start. The following details the documents every potential business must have to legally operate.

Reducing stress over real estate litigation

We have written about many of the challenges that people face with regard to real estate litigation, and negative emotions such as stress can certainly make life challenging for people who find themselves in the middle of these disputes. Whether you are facing litigation over commercial real estate or residential property, it is pivotal to have a solid grasp of your rights and the different legal options that may be available. Fortunately, there are a number of strategies that may be helpful when it comes to the reduction of stress levels in the midst of these disputes.

First of all, some people may be able to prevent a disagreement from going to court by negotiating with the other party and resolving the disagreement before it progresses further. Communication and mutual understanding are extremely important when it comes to this approach. With this said, our law firm also realizes that there are times when no level of interaction can keep a case out of the courtroom and litigation is inevitable. When someone is taken to court over a real estate matter, they may struggle with high levels of anxiety that can virtually shut them down.

Dale M. Maas, Attorney at Law
11777 Justice Avenue
Baton Rouge, LA 70816

Toll Free: 888-680-3843
Phone: 225-754-9864
Fax: 225-296-5778
Map & Directions

Best Estate Planners in Baton Rouge
}