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California Business Law Questions & Answers
2 Answers | Asked in Business Law for California on
Q: Is it legal for a company to suspend paying affiliate independent owner operators?

Question breakdown:

Company A (large limo company)

Company B (small limo company hired by A when they need help)

Company A pays B every 2 weeks with a net 45.

Company A stops paying B for jobs done between 02/1/20-02/16/20 about 10k. With A giving any warning and... Read more »

Shawn R. Jackson Esq.
Shawn R. Jackson Esq. answered on Mar 27, 2020

The key to resolution in these types of situations is the initial "mitigation" protocols … in which company A would pay company B … some level of the amount owed. Second issue … is there a written agreement covering how company B is to be paid?

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law and Business Law for California on
Q: I'm owed money for equipment in Cali and they're saying they can't cut checks because of Stay at Home, is that true?

A company that rents my film gear in California is saying they can't send out checks because of the Stay at Home ordinance happening. We are out of jobs and relying on that money owed to us. Is this true? Can companies not cut checks right now?

Neil Pedersen
Neil Pedersen answered on Mar 26, 2020

Legally it is not true. Our banking systems are one of the essential services that are not effected by the stay at home order.

Whether practically it is true or not depends on the specific circumstances of the situation. The problem is that you have no real way to force immediate payment....
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Business Law, Civil Rights and Health Care Law for California on
Q: My company does not comply with the State of California's "Stay at Home" order and is not within the critical businesses

While many of my company's employees have began working from home, a few departments are being required to go into the facility to continue work.

The company is not within any of the critical business sectors outlined within... Read more »

Louis George Fazzi
Louis George Fazzi answered on Mar 21, 2020

First, you should comply with the state Stay at Home order as best you can. If you have a critical position within the company, you should discuss the issue with your immediate management or someone in Human Resources, if there is one in your company. Generally, use good common sense for yourself... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law, Business Law and Construction Law for California on
Q: Coronavirus "stay home" order. Small contractor in San Diego with 5 employees.

We do drainage around homes, structural repair and retaining walls. We work outside. Am I shut down? I'm seeing lots of vague and conflicting information. If I can work do I have liability if someone gets sick?

Neil Pedersen
Neil Pedersen answered on Mar 19, 2020

As you might imagine this has never happened before so there is no resource to know what will and will not be lawful under these circumstances. The best I can say right now, a few hours after the order was issued, is that unless your business is involved in one of the 16 essential government... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Employment Law, Tax Law and Business Law for California on
Q: How to pay taxes if you're a contractor? I signed W-9 form when I was hired. Thank you!

Hello,

I have a question regarding taxes.

My situation a little bit complicated, as I couldn’t find the answer to it.

I’m in the US on an F1 visa, already finished my studying and I’m on OPT for 1 year right now, till the end of October.

To remain in-country... Read more »

Linda Simmons Campbell
Linda Simmons Campbell answered on Mar 13, 2020

If your company is a pass through entity you would file a Schedule C. I recommend paying an accountant to prepare your return. They will be able to help you reduce your tax bill. Make sure you use an experienced CPA.

1 Answer | Asked in Employment Law, Business Law and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Owner claims rights to material she did not create or pay for?

I created a logo, website, and social media accounts for a business that I am just an employee for. I never got paid for them, they never claimed rights to them. I am leaving and the owner is threatening to sue unless I give her all of these things. Would she win in this case?

Neil Pedersen
Neil Pedersen answered on Mar 11, 2020

You will need to share this information with an Intellectual Property attorney to get a solid answer. Often an employee does not own the intellectual property created for their employer while they are employed there. However any employment contracts or other documents you signed when hired or... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Business Law and Contracts for California on
Q: Is it customary for attorneys to keep clients’ stockholder share certificates at their office?
Shawn R. Jackson Esq.
Shawn R. Jackson Esq. answered on Mar 5, 2020

It is up to the individual attorney as to their preferences … most do not.

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1 Answer | Asked in Business Law and Contracts for California on
Q: An att. offered a “free” cons. to determine if he will take my case. He did and now wants to be paid for the consult.

I did sign the CA fee agreement.

A provision stated that NO work starts until I sign + $2K dep.

No mention of any fees for work before the effective date.

3 mo. after the effective date, I received my first bill for $3K for the "work" bfr. the contract sig. and another $3K... Read more »

John Francis Nicholson
John Francis Nicholson answered on Mar 5, 2020

Based upon your representation of the facts the attorney has done a number of things that violate the Rules of Professional Conduct in California.

1. Free consultation. The problem with this is proof. Does the attorney have a website or advertising stating "free consultation?" If he/she...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Civil Litigation and Contracts for California on
Q: Myself and sister were co-owners in home in Hesperia ca. Sister was residing in home , signed 20 yr contract for solar

I did not know about this contract signed 11/2018 , until friend sent photo of panels on home. Sister passed 2019 , now I'm dealing with this. Solar company says they only needed one signature. I told them without co-owner signature ? They said yes. Told them they should require both home owners... Read more »

Joseph Franklin Klatt
Joseph Franklin Klatt answered on Feb 15, 2020

A co-owner has rights to the undivided whole of the property and could sign such a contract. What you need to find out is if the contract was secured by your real property. If it was a secured loan, then the solar company can ultimately force a foreclosure to get their money out, subject to any... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Business Law, Civil Litigation and Personal Injury for California on
Q: can an employee be sued along with the corporation for negligence after he acting within course and scope?

If not, then is a demurrer and/or motion to strike appropriate?

The employee performed his duties of evaluating a company. The company did not like the evaluation and sued the corporation and the employee after an insurance company denied the claim.

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow answered on Feb 6, 2020

more info needed.

No an employee should not have exposure until most circumstances.

the corporation must have insurance and they will send the matter to a law firm.

you want to be sure the ins co agrees they are covering him and that the law firm will represent him.

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1 Answer | Asked in Business Formation, Business Law, Copyright and Trademark for California on
Q: i have a online business i am starting wanting to sell dog accessories and was wondering what trademark code would i use

i am going to sell collars, leashes, treats, clothing, toys, beds, etc and some things like collars/leashes/treats will be homemade

Tania Maria Williams
Tania Maria Williams answered on Feb 3, 2020

The classification codes vary depending on whether the product is a good or service. It would not be possible to truly answer your question without more information as, simply based upon your list, you will likely have multiple classification codes as pet apparel is a separate code from treats,... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Business Law, Civil Litigation and Criminal Law for California on
Q: Can u Sue a company because 1 of their employees destroyed video that would of shown someone being not guilty at a trial

loss prevention accuse my husband I'm trying to run him over and my husband was charged with assault with a deadly weapon out of the six videos that was given for evidence only one could be open for trial he also testified against my husband. my husband lawyer requested a retrial because of these... Read more »

Dale S. Gribow
Dale S. Gribow answered on Jan 31, 2020

more info needed.

anyone can sue anyone for anything at any time.

the question is would you win AND will a lawyer take the case on a contingency, rather than an hourly.

my office would never do so and if a lawyer takes a case like that they would want the client to prevail...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Tax Law, Business Formation and Business Law for California on
Q: Hello, I dissolved a corporation back in September and I'm not receiving notices from the Calif. Franchise Tax Board

Hello, I dissolved a corporation back in September and I'm not receiving notices from the Calif. Franchise Tax Board that I owe in excess of $900 for back "taxes" in 2018, which I think is the $800 annual fee. Am I still responsible to pay this? or can I ignore these notices since the corporation... Read more »

D. Mathew Blackburn
D. Mathew Blackburn answered on Jan 22, 2020

Generally you're not personally liable for the franchise fees.

It may be worth having a professional take a look and write a letter to the franchise board.

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law and Civil Litigation for California on
Q: How do i file for a civil mediation in California it is for business contract lack of payment 1/2 million?

I am a subcontractor who did not get pd by a contractor its been over six months i need to file arbitration or mediation how do i go about doing that

Donald M Barker
Donald M Barker answered on Jan 6, 2020

There are many unknowns with your question. Are you a licensed Contractor in CA? Do you have a contract with the person who owes you the money? Does that contract have a mandatory mediation or arbitration clause? If you are a licensed contractor, did you file the proper Mech Lien docs?... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Business Formation, Business Law and Legal Malpractice for California on
Q: Is there anything legal that can help i feel as if they are committing a crime as a shady business

I bought furniture from ashleys and it was delivered damaged. Called the same day and filed a complaint. Yet they want to send a tech fo my house to bring it up to manufacturing standards. They want to fix it instead of swaping it with a new one. And they denied my request to swap for a new one . I... Read more »

Shawn R. Jackson Esq.
Shawn R. Jackson Esq. answered on Jan 5, 2020

The short answer is to let them know that if you do not get "what you paid for" … then you will want to post an adverse review on Yelp and to take them to small claims court to get your money back and/or to receive what you paid for.

2 Answers | Asked in Business Law and Contracts for California on
Q: Is it fraud to use a line of credit opened by the previous owner of a business I purchased in March of this year?

We paid bought a bar in March of 2019- DBA, liquor license, all assets connected to the business. All accounts including credit lines, utilities, vendors etc. were supposed to be transferred or closed. Recently, I received a statement that there is a line of credit in the business name that the old... Read more »

George W. Wolff Esq.
George W. Wolff Esq. answered on Dec 29, 2019

If you just bought the assets of the company rather than the shares, probably not as it may be a personal line of credit.

It would be best to check with the Bank to see who took out this line of credit!!

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1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Civil Litigation and Contracts for California on
Q: Can I sue a company after signing a severance package

I signed a severance package on December 13th 2019. Today I found out there has been a data branch. A hr representative sent an employee and email that had all employees SSN and names . can I sue them for this data breach even though the severance says I can't sue

Michael Doland
Michael Doland answered on Dec 24, 2019

For an event not related to the subject matter of the settlement agreement, and occurring after the execution of the agreement, there should not be any obstacle. Of course, this is analysis and no answering attorney has seen the actual document you signed.

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law for California on
Q: What are the exact steps to add a member to a multi-member LLC in California?

I understand that I have to edit the operating agreement with and amendment stating the terms under which they are joining the company, but do I have to actually go and file anything with the state?

Michael Doland
Michael Doland answered on Dec 24, 2019

You will also need to update your Statement of Information.

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law for California on
Q: Do I still own my artwork after gallery has possessed it for three years?

Hi, I had work in an art gallery for a show, and when the show was over the gallery owner asked me to leave one piece of work with him so that he could try to sell it. It has been about two and a half years now. I texted with him about getting it back about a year ago and he agreed we'd try to meet... Read more »

George W. Wolff Esq.
George W. Wolff Esq. answered on Dec 6, 2019

Perhaps, yes.

Was any of your agreement or understanding stated in writing, or via texts or emails?

If so, do you still have access to them?

2 Answers | Asked in Employment Law, Business Law and Construction Law for California on
Q: I work for a contractor and he's been waiting on payment from a corporation since June of 2019 . What is taking so long?

The contractor I work for was doing a job for a company called CFS Complete Facility Solutions. We did construction work for them at a Taco Bell. We completed the job and during that process. A corporation called Cushman and Wakefield bought CFS. The contract says they have 90 days to pay us and... Read more »

Neil Pedersen
Neil Pedersen answered on Dec 6, 2019

If you are an employee of this contractor, your employer cannot make you wait for your pay until a client pays. You are entitled to payment on regularly designated pay days.

As to why there is a delay, there could be any number of reasons and no one here can know that answer. There are...
Read more »

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