New York City Intellectual Property Law Blog

Removing an executor from office

It might be easy for many in New York to assume that the most important people involved in the administration of an estate are the beneficiaries. Yet in actuality, a strong case might be made that it is the executor who plays the most important role. After all, it falls to the executor to ensure that the wishes of the settlor (as stipulated in the settlor’s estate instruments) are carried out. This brings with it a fiduciary duty, which (as detailed by the Cornell Law School) can result in serious penalties if breached. 

Exactly how an executor might breach their fiduciary duty may be open to debate. Ultimately, their obligation is to the settlor (as their role is specifically to administer the settlor’s estate as dictated). Yet they also may be accountable to those who are party to the estate. If such a party feels that an executor has failed to fulfill their designated duties, they can petition for them to be removed from the office. 

How to prevent litigation by terminated employees

New business owners in New York who plan to have employees must take proper precautions to ensure they do not face a lawsuit down the road. Wrongful termination is one of the biggest reasons ex-employees sue, so it is worth taking the time to put systems and regulations into place  to prevent this from happening.

According to Forbes, there are six major reasons employees bring lawsuits against their former employers. One is they do not understand why they faced termination. Another related one is being fired for bad performance when there was no documented proof. Failing to follow the company's policy is another reason employees sue. Other reasons have to do with the treatment of complaints. Employees expect employers to investigate their complaints in an expedient manner and, when they are not, they can use this against the employer in court.

Could someone easily step into your role at your company?

It is common for people who build their own businesses to think of their role in that business as indispensable. After all, you probably handle a significant amount of the daily operations. However, while it is okay to take pride in how much you do for your company, you shouldn't try to obfuscate your role or responsibilities.

If people close to you don't have the knowledge, understanding or authority to handle the role you play in the company, that could cause major issues in the future. If something happens to you, your business could soon fail. You need to plan for the future success of your company, even when you are no longer involved in its operations.

A closer look at the purpose of zoning laws

When people are interested in building a new establishment in New York, they cannot simply buy a plot of land and build whatever they want. The restrictions they will face are because of laws called zoning requirements. These rules and regulations are enforced to make sure that land is used for an appropriate purpose given its location, the surrounding establishments and who will be utilizing whatever is built on that land. 

Without zoning laws, there would be an incredible lack of organization and safety which could greatly impede a city's growth, the wellbeing of its citizens, the ability to attract new economic growth and potential to thrive. According to the New York City Department of City Planning, the primary factors of the Zoning Resolution are as follows:

  • The building's height.
  • The building's size.
  • The building's setback and positioning.
  • The building's shape. 

Common mistakes entrepreneurs make

Starting a business in New York can be exciting, but it is also very challenging. It is not something to lightly go into, as there are many things that can go wrong and quickly lead to the company's demise. It is important to understand some common mistakes that new business owners make so others can avoid them.

Some entrepreneurs decide to take on a partner to help run the business, and while this can be a successful strategy, Investopedia warns that picking the wrong partner can be disastrous. One should not choose a partner just because of family or friend ties, as this blurs boundaries and can interfere with important communications. A good partner ideally should have some business experience and should balance the skills of the other to help the business run more effectively.

Supporting the growth of a business through strategy

Growing a business in New York is not an objective that can be achieved by sitting idly by and waiting for success to come. On the contrary, successful company leaders spend considerable time testing strategies to find the ones that they can leverage to capitalize on their organization's strengths and ultimately achieve success. Through observation of their competitors and trial and error of their own experiments, organizational leaders can determine what methods are critical to their company's growth. 

Accelerating business growth beyond average accomplishments requires business leaders to learn the importance of timing their efforts to grow their company. People should also learn the value of embracing circumstances that are unexpected and potentially harmful to their business's future, and finding creative ways to make the most of their situation by strategizing to reduce the impact that unexpected changes may have on their growth and success. 

Being proactive to reduce your chances of a contract dispute

When you are working with other business professionals in New York, it would be ideal to know that every interaction and transaction would be dealt with responsibly and based on strong relationships of trust.

However, this is not always the case and there may be times when you are facing the difficulties stemming from a disagreement between parties. At Codispoti & Associates, P.C., we are experienced in working with various aspects of business law. 

What are methods for encouraging compliance after training?

When you are tasked with training employees at your organization in New York, you may be frustrated with situations where your employees seem ignorant of important regulations you have encouraged them to follow. Providing the type of training that motivates them to continually honor and follow company-wide protocols is critical to ensuring that your teaching is being practiced on a daily basis. 

While you are training, provide real-life examples to illustrate the importance of what you are teaching and to emphasize how your employees can make a difference by agreeing to abide by the rules that have been created for their protection and efficiency in their jobs. Consider incorporating role play that allows your employees to visualize what it would be like to be in compromising situations where they have decisions that need to be made. The acting may help reinforce the points you have been teaching. 

An attorney can help you secure a commercial lease in New York

Running a business means that you have to handle a lot of issues, often simultaneously. One of the most important decisions you will make as a business owner or manager is the location of your company. The right location can make it easier for customers and clients to access you.

However, the most desirable areas in New York typically have incredibly high rental costs. In order to secure the rights to rent the right place for your business, you will need to spend time considering different properties and then reviewing the terms of the lease offered by the landlords for those spaces.

Do you need a trust as part of your estate plan?

Many New Yorkers believe they do not need to engage in any estate planning. Are you one of them? Maybe you trust your family members to wrap up the last of your affairs peacefully. Maybe you already set up beneficiaries on the accounts that matter most to you. You may have no dependents and would prefer not to make people feel as though you played favorites with specific items you own. None of this excludes you from the benefits of incorporating a trust into your estate plan.

According to CNBC, if you have a retirement fund, savings account, home or other assets, you need an estate plan.  Baby boomers are currently the wealthiest generation in America, but many of them are retiring, and consequently, passing away. Over the next three to four decades, this will lead to $30 trillion in assets passing to the next generations, presumably Generation X and Generation Y.

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