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Dayton Legal Issues Blog

Real estate law representation: an exacting, complex realm

We spotlight relevant subject-matter points in some detail on a page of our website devoted to real estate law and transactions at the Dayton business law firm of Gottschlich & Portune, LLP.

That focus on complexity is warranted, we submit, for one central and immediate reason, namely this: the real estate realm -- that is, the universe of commercial and residential real estate considerations -- is flatly broad and, yes, complex.

Firing an employee without getting burned

You know you have put it off for too long, and your company has suffered because of it. However, if you are honest with yourself, the potential ramifications of firing this particular employee -- or maybe any employee -- make you so nervous you have been willing to endure having this person on the staff and risk the damage he or she is doing.

Whether the employee is performing poorly or dragging down company morale, there is no question that you must terminate his or her employment. The problem is that you may not be sure how to do it without an emotional – or even violent – scene. Worse, how can you fire an employee without facing a wrongful termination lawsuit?

Franchising: challenges yet great opportunity for some businesses

Perhaps you are the owner of a commercial entity commanding great public appeal across a wide dimension and with a business model that might be susceptible of replication by other astute entrepreneurs.

Or maybe it is the case that you are that smart and energetic entrepreneur, with your eye on an existing business that you believe could be quite profitable under your management.

Do I need to register for trademark protection?

Trademarks are visual symbols or words that are used to represent a company and the services or goods it offers. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office describes a trademark as a "word, phrase, symbol, or design, or a combination thereof," that marks businesses' goods as unique to them and distinguishable from competitors.

Therefore it is of prime importance that a company protects their trademark(s). This blog is intended to offer a brief introduction to when it is necessary to register for trademark protection, and any steps that you may need to take in order to protect your trademark.

Employers' perspective: in search of a bullet-proof job application

It's just a piece of paper, right? What could be anything other than harmless regarding a straightforward set of questions asked of a prospective Ohio employee in a job application?

Actually, plenty, as is centrally implied on a page of our website at the Dayton business law firm of Gottschlich & Portune, LLP, noting that our attorneys "represent employers in claims made by employment applicants."

When a workplace accident brings a visit from OSHA

You may have taken every precaution to prevent a serious accident at your workplace. Following the guidelines in place by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, you have posted the most recent job safety flier and routinely offer training and reviews for your employees. Each year, you submit a report to OSHA summarizing any workplace injuries or job-related illnesses, which, thankfully, have been few and minor.

However, the unthinkable has happened, and an employee has suffered a devastating or fatal injury. Not only are you and your employees distraught over the accident, but you are now facing a visit and inspection from OSHA investigators. You may have concerns about how to prepare for such an event.

Is a contractual arbitration clause bullet proof in all instances?

One lawmaker is at the forefront of debate and legislative action relevant to recommended limits on -- in fact, outright invalidation of -- arbitration clauses between consumers and financial institutions in some instances.

And, reportedly, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown D-Ohio) is having a hard slog of it getting any support for his bill on Capitol Hill.

Keeping the company going: focus on business succession planning

It's one thing for an entrepreneur and/or business team in Ohio or elsewhere nationally to tap creative energies and talents that result in the formation of an ongoing and thriving business.

It's quite another to ensure the successful succession of that enterprise down the road, when a major life transition looms for a business principal, such as progressively phased-out participation in key commercial matters or retirement.

Sometimes the best-laid plans can still yield estate litigation

By all indications, recently deceased entertainer Alan Thicke took his estate planning most seriously and in a clearly reflective and well-considered manner.

As court documents addressing the details of a living trust executed by the songwriter and television personality recently revealed, Thicke provided for family members in a seemingly thoughtful and most methodical way.

Separation agreements may help protect your company

Running a business comes with many responsibilities. While a number of those duties may allow you to strengthen your company and reap the benefits of your hard work, you may also have to deal with tasks that seem less enjoyable. As an employer, gaining and losing employees likely take place relatively often as your business needs change, and you may find yourself having a difficult time letting an employee go.

This type of situation can cause tension for everyone involved, especially if the employee's leaving comes about due to termination or layoff. Therefore, you may wish to consider how to protect yourself and your company while also allowing the employee to understand the dissolution of the business relationship.

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