NLRB’s New ‘Joint Employment’ Rule Will Apply to More Franchise Relationships

Rule expands responsibilities 

by Joshua Becker

Franchise agreements have long been recognized as independent contractor agreements where a franchisor licenses its trademarks and business format systems to third-party franchisees — who each operate independent businesses using the trademarks and systems subject to the terms of the contract between them. This independent contractor model is favored by both franchisors and … [More]

Business Succession Planning Is Crucial for Successfully Sustaining a Business

Preparing for the expected and unexpected assures critical staff, customers, banks and vendors that the company’s future is seamless

by Scott Jensen, Esq.

Millions were glued to the screen for multiple episodes and seasons of “Succession,” watching the agony of a major corporation with nowhere to go when its charismatic leader was gone. It might have worked for binge streaming but, in real life, a failure to plan doesn’t end with the director yelling, “That’s a take.” Too many companies rest their future on a handshake and … [More]

The Corporate Transparency Act: How to prepare your business for the new reporting requirements

by Stephen Boatwright & Guillaume Aimé 

Historically, smaller companies in the United States have had minimal legal compliance obligations to operate. Founders selected the state of incorporation or organization, picked their legal structure, and filed a one- or two-page formation document. With the enactment of the Federal Corporate Transparency Act, that has all changed for those companies that are often the most … [More]

A Business Owner’s Primer to Lawsuit Settlement 

Going to trial is not always the right thing for a client

by Emily Ward

Trials are very costly — in terms of both expense and the emotional exhaustion that comes from the weeks of preparation and the long days spent in the courthouse. Although most clients are keenly aware that settlement avoids the financial challenges of trial, most do not fully recognize the time-and-energy-value settlements can bring for an issue to be resolved — early and … [More]

AI in the Workplace: Promises and Pitfalls

Companies should consider developing guidelines regarding AI technologies 

by Melissa L. Shingles

Discussion of Artificial Intelligence and its transformative role in the workplace is seemingly everywhere. Whether the issue is how employers can utilize AI to bolster their human resources and management functions, or employees’ utilization of AI tools for work-related tasks, companies are paying attention to both the promises and pitfalls inherent in these new … [More]

Navigating the Maze of Construction Defect Claims in Arizona 

Key to a successful relationship is the binding agreement between the parties

by Kyle T. Geiger

The nationwide boom of residential and commercial construction has continued into 2023. The increase of construction in Arizona is largely due to the increase in population. In 2022, Maricopa County gained the most residents in the nation, adding 56,831 residents, a gain of 1.3% since 2021, according to March 30, 2023, figures from the U.S. Census Bureau. Also contributing to … [More]

Big Changes Are Coming to HIPAA Privacy Laws Heading into Summer

They include tiered structure for penalties and incentives for reporting

by Heather Macre

As we head into summer, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) will have its first major revisions in ten years. HIPAA is a federal law that required the creation of national standards to protect sensitive patient health information from being disclosed without the patient’s consent or knowledge. HIPAA has three major components: the Privacy Rule, the … [More]

How Do I Ward Off Counterfeits? 

Strategies to stay alert as so much business is transitioning to E-commerce

by Hani Sayed

After nearly three years of pandemic-sized changes in all our lives, we seem to finally be over the COVID hump. While we’re all excited for the return to normalcy, some things will never be the same. For example, the hybrid or remote working environment has fundamentally changed the work atmosphere. Work dress codes have morphed from business casual to something resembling a … [More]

Arizona’s Sports and Event Betting Law

What businesses need to know 

by Kortney Otten and Sarah Myers

In September 2021, sports and event betting became legal in Arizona. Between September 2021 and November 2022, more than $7 billion has been wagered in Arizona, generating more than $30 million in revenue for Arizona’s general fund. Sports Betting Arizona’s 2021 statute authorizes and regulates sports betting, online gaming and betting, and event wagering conducted by … [More]

Intellectual Property Trends: What’s in Store for 2023 and Beyond? 

It’s an increasingly complex landscape for patents

by Steven Laureanti

In the current economic climate, inventors, entrepreneurs and businesses of all sizes must be diligent in turning their creativity into marketable products and services. Part of this process involves understanding the intersection of operations and the full life cycle and protectable scope of intellectual property, focusing on maximizing long-term value and viability. … [More]

Data Privacy: Change Is Coming 

What businesses need to know about the proposed American Data Privacy and Protection Act

by Erin Dunlap

Introduced to Congress in June, the American Data Privacy and Protection Act advanced toward a floor vote in the House of Representatives in July. If passed, it will be the first comprehensive federal data privacy law in the U.S. — our equivalent to the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation.  The proposed legislation was considered the biggest breakthrough to … [More]

How to Respond to an EPA or State Enforcement Action

by Henry R. Darwin

Environmental laws and regulations are numerous and complicated. They include the Clean Air Act; the Clean Water Act; the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act; and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (aka Superfund) — to name just a few. These laws and associated regulations are enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency and the … [More]

Tighten Contracts ahead of Supply Chain Delays

by Gary Smith

Between pandemic effects, the economy, the possibility of a railroad strike and a shortage of chassis in the trucking industry, businesses are likely to experience continued supply chain issues impacting their ability to deliver products and services on time and within budget. Because delays put them at risk for breach of contract, companies who supply goods and services — … [More]

Legal Challenges in These Arizona Boom Times

by Hani Sayed

Over the last 40 years, Arizona has grown rapidly and has become increasingly attractive for businesses and individuals. While this growth has been steady and predictable given a variety of factors such as weather, economics and affordable housing, the arrival of COVID accelerated such growth. In turn, Arizona has revealed itself as a thriving high-tech hub with a proficient … [More]

Environmental Health & Safety Considerations for Business Operations

by Todd W. Rallison

Comprehensive U.S. laws to protect the environment and worker health and safety (collectively EHS laws) date from the 1970s and 1980s, with numerous state or industry-specific antecedents. Most of those original laws have since been amended or expanded in the 1990s and beyond, the most recent being the 2016 revision to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA, which, despite its … [More]

COVID Continues to Infect Business

by Susan Trujillo and Eric Johnson

Exigencies of workplace and workforce needs and relationships persist even as restrictions ease from the height of the pandemic. Susan Trujillo speaks to healthcare and COVID safety, with guidance for employers and regulatory response, and Eric Johnson discusses legal ramifications of and regulatory considerations on remote and hybrid work — including Arizona-specific … [More]

Increased Debt Limits for Both Subchapter V and Chapter 13 Cases 

by Carrie Tatkin

The Small Business Reorganization Act, commonly referred to as “Subchapter V,” is a streamlined, flexible process for small businesses to reorganize in bankruptcy. Subchapter V is a type of Chapter 11 case designed for debtors (an entity or individual) engaged in business where at least half their total debt is business related. Less procedurally complex than a traditional … [More]

(Not) Business as Usual: Corporate Political Activity in 2022

by Christine Fort

Inflation, the economy, taxes, gas prices, labor and supply shortages, education, immigration. Today’s state of affairs is rife with motivation to join in the political debate this election season. This holds true for the business community, which is significantly impacted by the policies enacted here in Arizona and in Washington, D.C., as well as the elected officials … [More]

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