Legal Forecast new
Look into your future, see what legal issues you may come across, and learn how to handle them. The only certainty in life is that it is unpredictable -- much like the weather. While this may make life exciting, it can also lead to worry and feelings of insecurity. Fortunately, laws -- and centuries of legal practice -- are in place to help you deal with most of the issues you will face in your life. With proper foresight and effective legal planning, at least you will have the organization prepared to deal with life's major events: marriage, children, work, sickness, and death. Now, take a few minutes and check your legal forecast! PLEASE KEEP IN MIND THAT OUR REPORT SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED SPECIFIC LEGAL ADVICE. REQUIREMENTS OF STATE LAWS VARY AND A LOCAL LAWYER MAY BE REQUIRED TO ADDRESS YOUR LEGAL CONCERNS.
Agreement to Admit New PartnerThe addition of a partner to an existing partnership is generally a matter best handled through a contractual agreement among the existing partners. Such an agreement spells out the role of the new partner and the new partner's expected contributions and share of the profits. It can also outline any changes that an addition will make to the relationship between existing partners and the partnership.
Articles of IncorporationWhile corporations are the victims of double taxation -- both corporate earnings and distributed profits are taxed ? the personal liability of their owners for debts of the business is limited. Unlike partners, who may be readily held accountable for obligations of the partnership, the principals of a corporation needn?t be overly concerned that claims against the business will become claims against them.
Assignment and Transfer of CopyrightA copyright gives authors, artists, and composers the exclusive right to publish, and determine who else may publish, their works. A copyright is a property right in a work itself. Like any other property, the owner of a copyright may determine when and under what conditions it may be conveyed to others.
Bill of SaleA bill of sale "memorializes" a transaction. It provides a record of what was sold and for how much. It warrants that the person selling the item(s) had clear title and, under the law, was permitted to sell the property. The bill of sale also indicates whether any other warranties accompany the item(s) sold, or if the property is being conveyed "as is." In most states, implied warranties may be disclaimed at the time of sale - as long as this disclaimer is clearly made in writing.
Corporate BylawsBylaws govern the internal workings of a corporation, including the qualifications, duties and powers of corporate officers, rules for shareholders' and directors' meetings, and rules governing the execution of important documents. They may be drawn up by the incorporators, shareholders, or the board of directors.
Employment AgreementAn employment agreement is a useful tool to make clear the obligations an employee has to an employer, a tool that can heighten the confidence of the employee that any oral promises made regarding pay, other compensation, benefits, or vacations, will be honored. Such an agreement can define the expectations the employer has of its employees, though it cannot violate obligations employers have under state and federal laws.
Equipment LeaseAn equipment lease is a lease used to rent items of personal property rather than real estate. The document details the respective responsibilities of lessor and lessee regarding such property - insurance, rent, late fees, security deposits, restrictions on use, etc. - in clear terms, banishing the confusion that vagueness, ambiguity and unsupported oral assurances all too often generate between parties to these transactions.
Independent Contractor AgreementAn independent contractor agreement should be used by people who undertake projects for hire and the people who hire them. It protects the interests of both parties. The contractor is generally protected from being required to do work beyond that specified under the terms of the agreement and is given an enforceable promise of payment. The person hiring the contractor is protected from the responsibilities associated with having the contractor considered an employee. The agreement may also specify limits on the liabilities of both parties. In short, the agreement is an enforceable promise of work to be done and the payment for that work
Limited Liability Company Articles of OrganizationA limited liability company is structured similarly to a partnership and shares some of the same tax benefits, as governed by statute. However, like a corporation, the liability of its members is limited. As a result, it must file articles of organization that set it up as a legal entity distinct from the people involved in the business.
Limited Partnership AgreementSome partners may wish to merely invest in the business and not have any responsibility for day-to-day operations. This agreement is most appropriate under those circumstances, permitting one or more partners to be shielded from the liabilities that could result from business operations over which they have little or no control. There may be any number of limited partners, but there must be no fewer than two people executing this agreement - at least one general partner and one limited.
Model's Photographic Release newBefore you make commercial use of any photographs you have taken of an individual, you must obtain a release from that person specifying the exact scope of your rights - copyright, display, alteration, promotion, derivative images, etc. - regarding such pictures.
Non Compete AgreementAll too often the fear of one or both parties to a potential business exchange that the other will use the fruits of that exchange to its competitive detriment prevents the exchange from ever taking place. A non competition agreement may dispel such fears by specifying exact forms of conduct - overt competition, solicitation of business, poaching employees - that will not be permitted between the parties.
Non Disclosure AgreementAny exchange of information carries within it the potential for unwanted disclosure, the wrongful or unwitting dissemination of secrets. A non-disclosure agreement may clarify the terms of such exchanges - confining the parties within a structure of responsibilities and remedies that will ideally allow them to speak without fear of being overheard or reported.
Notice of Disputed AccountWhenever you question a bill, it is wise to immediately put the person or company charging your account on. Otherwise, you could automatically have a judgment entered against you that says you must pay up - even if it turns out you really didn't owe anything. Giving formal notice that you dispute a charge may not ultimately relieve you of the debt, especially if you really owe the money, but it will give you leverage if you don't.
Partnership AgreementPartnerships are formed by agreement between the people involved. Such individuals may even have a mere understanding that they are partners in business, but most - if not all - attorneys would recommend getting something on paper. They are arguably the most flexible of business relationships - partnerships may be set up in just about any way the partners agree. A partnership agreement may be helpful because it can clearly outline the role of each partner, the work each will be expected to perform, the amount each is to contribute and division of profits and losses. A partnership agreement may also determine how long a partnership is to last - including whether it is to extend beyond the life of the original partners.
Request for Credit InvestigationWhile the three major credit reporting agencies - or credit bureaus - keep a wealth of information about your credit history in their files, it is your responsibility to ensure that this data is accurate. If you find errors in your credit report, the law permits you to request that they be corrected, and so long as your dispute is not "frivolous," the Fair Credit Reporting Act requires that the agency delete the incorrect information - or at least attempt to verify it.
Sales AgreementIn most states, the sale of goods over a certain minimum amount - between $500 or $1,000, depending on the state - requires a written sales agreement. Some states have even more stringent laws mandating a written contract. Accompanying your sale with a written agreement backs you up as well as the purchaser. It serves as a record that a promise was made to enter into the transaction and locks in the terms, including the price to be paid for the specified items.
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