Legal Resources

Investigate before taking action over alleged misdeeds

Employers must walk a fine line when they suspect an employee is engaging in misdeeds. On one hand, if they don’t act quickly and forcefully they could risk liability for harm to co-workers or customers. But at the same time, acting too quickly or forcefully poses the risk of liability for defamation, as recent cases illustrate. For example, a graphics company in Charleston, S.C., recently agreed to pay a significant settlement to former employee George Walton,

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Showing of ‘sex-based animus’ enough for bias claim

Under the federal Equal Pay Act, employers who pay unequal wages to men and women performing jobs that require substantially equal skill, effort and responsibility under similar conditions in the same organization face legal liability. To succeed, an aggrieved employee must provide “comparator evidence”: specific evidence that she is being paid less than a specific coworker for equal work. This can be a tough hurdle for a plaintiff to clear. But a recent decision from a

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Employees working from home? There are issues to consider

There is no employer in this country whose operations were not dramatically impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak this spring. While the coronavirus disrupted the workplace in countless ways, one of the biggest sudden adjustments was the massive increase in employees working remotely from home. For some employers, this was nothing new. For other employers, however, this probably has been a logistical adventure. Either way, having employees working from home raises a host of legal implications. That

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Sole Proprietorship: The Good, the Bad, and the Legal Reality

What Dreams Are Made of? Being your own boss is a dream for many. It is also a pleasant daydream to many more stuck in stifling offices or unfulfilling careers. In addition to freedom from an unsympathetic supervisor’s requirements, owning a business appeals to so many because of the opportunity for greater creative expression in your work and the perception that more money will go into your wallet rather than to a nameless, faceless higher-up in

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Why You Need a Lawyer for FSBO Residential Transactions

When It Comes to Home Sweet Home, Don’t Go On Your Own Owning a home is not just the dream of millions of Americans, but it is also the key to growing wealth. Purchasing a home is one of the largest expenditures most people will ever make, but it is also the largest investment they will ever have, since the value of real estate, historically, goes up. Money put into a home can be taken out

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Using Depreciation to Control a Loan Forgiveness Tax Surprise

Bonus depreciation and Section 179 expense can be a valuable tool to help you manage your business’ profit margin this year. Here are some thoughts to consider. The problem Many businesses struggling during the pandemic took out Small Business Association Payroll Protection Program loans (SBA PPP loans). The SBA’s willingness to forgive these loans is now creating a potential tax obligation. This is because the expenses used to offset this loan can no longer be deducted

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Ideas For Better Savings Rates

Before the housing bubble burst in 2008, you could find high yield savings accounts that were paying rates over 5.0 percent. Today? These same banks are paying less than .10 percent. So where are you supposed to put your money? Is there anywhere else you can put your hard-earned cash and generate a modest return? Here are several suggestions. Social Lending. Consider a social lending site like LendingClub, a peer-to-peer loan network that allows you to

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A Happy Banker Makes for a Happy Business

With the onset of COVID-19, small business banks are more nervous about potential loan losses than ever. Here are several tips for your business to maintain a great working relationship with your lender. These same tips can also be used if you want to plant seeds with your banker for potential future loans. Produce timely financial statements. Your lender may require you to produce financial statements over the duration of your loans to ensure that you

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Common IRS Surprises

No one likes surprises from the IRS, but they do occasionally happen. Here are some examples of unpleasant tax situations you could find yourself in and what to do about them. An expected refund turns into a tax payment. Nothing may be more deflating than expecting to get a nice tax refund and instead being met with the reality that you actually owe the IRS more money. What you can do: Run an estimated tax return

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Turn Your Home Office Into a Tax Deduction

If you are working from home for the first time in 2020, you may be wondering if your home office is tax deductible. The bad news? If you’re working from home for an employer, you normally can’t deduct your home office expenses. Here’s a quick look at the basic requirements to be able to deduct your home office expenses, along with some suggestions for how to qualify for the deduction if you’re currently working for your

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