Lufkin Legal Blog

Preparing to lease commercial real estate

Starting a business is a difficult process for anyone. Luckily, many Texas residents put in the time and effort to make their entrepreneurial dreams come true. After getting their business up and running, many find it necessary to move out of their home office or basement and into an actual commercial space. Of course, leasing commercial real estate is not always easy.

It is important to consider every detail of a commercial lease, especially for first-time leasees. Some people may read over a proposed lease and think that they are at the mercy of the landlord. However, everything in a commercial lease is negotiable, and if business owners find something in a lease that does not work for them, they may want to remember that they can present alternate terms to their potential landlord.

What Are Some Common Causes Of Trucking Accidents?

Trucking accidents can be some of the most serious motor vehicle accidents, often resulting in severe or even fatal injuries. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 4,136 people died in large truck crashes in 2018 alone. These types of trucks can include big rigs, tractor trailers, delivery trucks and other large commercial vehicles.

Many motorists may be aware of the dangers that such large trucks can present to those in smaller vehicles like cars and motorcycles. To increase the safety of all on Texas roadways, it can be helpful to understand some of the common causes of trucking accidents.

Business formation: Beyond the idea

Great ideas are easy to recognize at play in the marketplace. But as an aspiring entrepreneur, it can be hard to settle on an idea that's truly workable. Your instinct may be to go with your gut for a business concept-your first "great" idea. However, it's important to seriously consider the potential profitability of your endeavor before you move forward legally with business formation.

Before you finalize your idea, do your research. Forming a business can be incredibly rewarding, but it is a significant responsibility and financial commitment. It's important to learn all you can about the industry you're entering, the market value of your product or service and how others are successfully operating similar businesses. It's advantageous to consult with legal and financial advisors early in the process of business formation to ensure that you start on the right track.

Probate litigation could result over life insurance beneficiaries

It is common to leave assets to surviving loved ones using payable-on-death or transfer-on-death designations. These designations allow you to name beneficiaries directly to take over an account or asset. Life insurance policies typically allow for direct beneficiary designations, and while this can be convenient, issues could arise during probate if a spouse is not named as the beneficiary.

In community property states, like Texas, a spouse is usually entitled to a claim of certain benefits, including those from a life insurance policy. If another person is named as the beneficiary, the spouse could potentially make a claim in efforts to obtain at least a portion of the payout. This is particularly true if the policyholder used marital funds to pay the insurance premiums. As a result, conflict over who gets the funds could occur.

Testamentary trusts can better ensure asset control

Questions about how to provide for irresponsible family members and minor children are common in estate planning. Rather than simply not leaving assets to those loved ones, you may want to consider your planning options. Fortunately, numerous estate planning tools can be utilized to create a plan for you and your family. A testamentary trust is one such estate planning tool.

Trade secret theft could lead to commercial litigation

Most companies in Texas and across the country cannot function without the help of their employees. As a result, employees may need to be let in on trade secrets and other important information to help them perform their work-related duties. However, if employees misappropriate those trade secrets or steal proprietary information, commercial litigation could result.

It was recently reported that two former Apple employees are accused of stealing trade secrets. Currently, the two individuals are facing criminal charges for the alleged theft. Reportedly, one individual took over 2,000 files from Apple that contained information from Apple's secure databases. The other former employee allegedly took files relating to the company's self-driving car program and then stated that he was going to work for a competitor. It was noted that both men pleaded not guilty to the allegations.

Not complying with regulations leads to penalties for businesses

It was recently reported that nearly $900,000 in penalties were levied against multiple businesses in Texas for regulations violations. Reports stated that 17 entities were fined, and all of the violations were related to environmental regulations. Of the 17 businesses fined, two of them were located in Central Texas, and it was noted that they had already paid their fines, which totaled over $70,000.

Older individuals can still start a business if it's their dream

Taking on a new venture in life can be intimidating. Even if Texas residents believe they will be fulfilling a life-long dream, they can still feel hesitant to get started, especially if they are of an older age. Many people 50 and over may feel that it is too late to start a business, but fortunately, their years may give them advantages in this endeavor.

With time comes experience, and many older people have gained life and work experience through the years that could help them when running their own businesses. They may have learned from the mistakes of others that they worked for or can even apply life lessons to business operations. Certainly, the potential for mishaps exist, but older individuals may have better coping mechanisms for dealing with those mishaps that they have learned throughout the years.

Three estate planning tips for business owners

Entrepreneurs are incredibly busy. Between managing daily tasks, employees, business, and their personal lives, business owners rarely have time to sit down and enjoy their free time. Business owners may feel that they don't have time to dedicate to the estate planning process.

But estate planning is not a waste of time and can actually be a time saver and proper planning will make life easier in the future. There are a few steps that business owners absolutely need to take during the estate planning process.

Estate planning is important for different reasons

Doing a little research into the estate planning process before you start is a smart move. In doing so, you will find that there is no one size fits all approach. Estate planning is about understanding the laws surrounding transferring assets to family and loved ones and implementing a strategy to achieve your goals.

Before you jump right into the process, you may want to gain information on why having a plan is useful and what steps you can take to create the plan that is right for you and your family.

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