How to Marry in Business

Elena Volkova, Esq. on November 17, 2015

In our previous article, we discussed the definition of the joint venture and how it can be created by using a contract. As an example, I used American Express Small Business joint marketing campaign. In today’s article, I want to discuss how to form a joint venture by forming a separate company with another business. Why would someone want to create a special-purpose company with another business? Simple answer: Leverage. Let me illustrate with a fictional story. Let’s say you are a business coach, and you have an established private practice, coaching business owners on how to set and achieve Read More…


Loosey-Goosey Business Arrangements Will Bite You Every Time

Elena Volkova, Esq. on November 17, 2015

In this final article on how to create joint ventures, I am going to touch upon the most undesirable way to structure a business relationship – unincorporated general partnership. A general partnership can be formed (in writing or accidentally) when two or more individuals or entities come together to conduct business and spread the costs, profits and losses of the co-venture. Without a partnership agreement or corporate form, a general partnership may be created by implication if two parties are working together to share profits and losses. The only advantage of a general business partnership is that it is flexible. Read More…


Joint Ventures For Small Business From The Legal Perspective

Elena Volkova, Esq. on October 14, 2015

“When I go into business with someone, I want to know two things: am I going to make money and am I going to get [taken advantage of].” Murray Stark This simple wisdom from our family friend Murray Stark is by far the best advice on joint ventures that I know. Murray is a veteran real estate developer. He has seen amazing highs and gut-wrenching lows in his business. He loves risk. He loves making money. He loves finding good deals. He also happens to know his stuff inside and out, and he is relentless with due diligence. He also Read More…


Ask Cari: Can I Copyright that Recipe?

Cari Rincker, Esq. on September 18, 2015

Dear Cari, I am writing a cookbook and developing some of my own recipes. Do I have copyright protection with my recipes? Ann. M. Dear Ann: To answer your question, one must first look at what can be copyrighted. Under the U.S. Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. ยง 102, copyright applies only to “original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.” (Emphasis added) Under the statute, these original “works of authorship” include Read More…


5 Reasons to Hire an External General Counsel

Jodi Erlandsen, Esq. on August 21, 2015

All companies are facing increased legal, compliance and regulatory requirements, often alongside significantly shrinking operational expense budgets. Start-up ventures and small businesses are particularly feeling that pinch. In an ideal world, entrepreneurs and small businesses could simply hire their own general counsel to manage their companies’ legal entity formations, transactions, litigation, corporate governance and regulatory compliance programs. However, when that is not possible, a sound alternative is to hire an external general counsel who provides legal support on a periodic or ongoing consulting basis rather than as a full-time employee. There are a number of reasons that this model could Read More…


Are You Investing Money or Lending Money? And Why Does It Matter?

Corey Lederman on July 14, 2015

Contracts are promises that the law will enforce. When confronted with conflicting interpretations of a contract, as in almost any contract lawsuit, New York courts look to the substance of the promises to decipher the parties’ intent – even if that means ignoring contrary language. In late April 2015, the New York Supreme Court decided in Lesches v. The Estate of Alejandro Omes that when Lesches gave money to music festival promoters to fund a music festival in Miami, it was not an equity investment, bearing the risk of loss, but instead a loan, which needed to be repaid in Read More…


Get Your Business Off To The Right Start By Incorporating and Putting The Proper Agreements And Disclaimers In Place

Corey Lederman and Elena Volkova, Esq. on July 14, 2015

Incorporate Incorporating allows you to protect your personal assets, your intellectual property and allows for better estate planning by ensuring that the business you’re creating will live and operate independent of you. While you’re doing the wonderful work that you do, you also need to be thinking about the worst: What if I get sued? All it takes is one disgruntled client that misunderstands or misrepresents what you told them or what they thought you agreed upon to take you to court. The cost of defending that suit, even if you win, could be thousands of dollars – coming straight Read More…


How Do I Start a Home-Based Food Business in NYC?

Sarah Trepel, Esq. on July 14, 2015

You have a love for cooking, baking, blending spices, pickling vegetables, smoking meats, or roasting coffee… You’re a food connoisseur and you create tasty concoctions in your home kitchen all the time… You’ve daydreamed about turning your passion for food into a business… But then you think yourself, “How do I make it happen from my own kitchen?” The good news is that you can start your own home-based food business. However, there are a number of laws regulating how homemade foods can enter the hands – or mouths – of consumers. Anyone who is considering starting their own home-based Read More…


Hiring Virtual Workers Overseas? Here’s What You Need to Know About Taxes

Albert Bloomsbury, Esq. on May 2, 2015

It’s a trend that’s not going away anytime soon: more and more small businesses are turning to the internet to outsource tasks to virtual workers. And, thanks to lower costs of living in other countries, you can easily get good quality work done for a much smaller investment by outsourcing to workers around the world. It almost sounds too good to be true, right? There has to be some kind of catch, right? The truth is… yes – there is a catch. A tax catch. Sometimes. International Taxes – do you have to pay them? Your foreign employee’s host country Read More…


Ouch! Reality TV Host Learns Harsh Legal Lesson

Corey Lederman on April 22, 2015

His “biggest disappointment,” lamented Marcus Lemonis in an interview with Inc. Magazine, was his failed acquisition of A. Stein Meat Products – a New York City-based wholesale meat distributor. Lemonis is an entrepreneur and host of “The Profit,” a CNBC Reality TV show where he invests his own capital in family-owned “sick businesses” (as he calls them) in his quest to prove to viewers and himself that “every single business can be reinvented and fixed.” In the March 4, 2014 episode featuring A. Stein Meat, Lemonis initially offered to buy a 50% ownership interest in the company for $1 million. Read More…


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