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Baton Rouge Business and Commercial Law Blog

The information about business law that your company needs

A company that is just getting off the ground will need to address several legal hurdles. But, after the business is off and running, sometimes the decision makers don't think about the possibility of further legal issues popping up. This can be a mistake, because most businesses in Louisiana will likely have ongoing legal needs in the course of operation.

That is why it can be so important to get the right information about business law as issues come to the forefront - not necessarily only when issues reach "crisis" levels. Businesses in Louisiana can face a number of different issues, such as the drafting and review of contracts and lease agreements, overview of employee handbooks and employment litigation. While these issues may not be routine for smaller companies, larger companies in Louisiana know that it is best to have a plan to take the right approach when these issues come up.

What is a material breach in a contract dispute?

Businesses in Louisiana enter into contracts in good faith - they don't expect a breach of the terms of the contract by either side. However, many contracts will include sections that address how potential issues of breach will be addressed, with many including clauses that call for arbitration instead of litigation. But, most cases will only proceed to this point if there is a material breach that is alleged to have occurred. What is a material breach?

There are varying levels of a breach of contract. At its essence, a breach just means that one side or the other isn't complying with the terms of the contract. In some cases, the breach can be remedied in short order. However, a material breach may take the issue too far.

Avoiding employment litigation based on an ADA violation claim

Although it can be immensely rewarding to own a business that provides jobs for many people, there is always the possibility that, no matter how good the relationship between employers and employees is, employment litigation could pop up for any given reason. Smart employers take steps to protect themselves from lawsuits, like learning how to avoid an employment law claim of an ADA violation.

The ADA, short for the "Americans with Disabilities Act," protects disabled people from discrimination in the workplace. Employers who commit violations of the ADA can be found liable in court and held responsible for financial claims.

Owner of commercial facility faces lawsuit after tragic accident

Most businesses in Louisiana take the appropriate steps to attempt to make sure that their liability under employment law is limited. Unfortunately, it is incredibly hard to prepare for the unexpected, like tragic accidents at a workplace facility. Two companies in Louisiana are facing this problem right now, as they are now defendants in a lawsuit that was filed in the aftermath of an explosion at a packaging facility.

According to recent reports, the father of a worker who was killed in an explosion in the facility located in DeRidder, Louisiana filed the lawsuit in Houston. The cause of the explosion, which occurred in February of this year, is still under investigation. However, the lawsuit identifies the owner of the facility as well as the worker's employer as defendants. The worker's father is seeking to hold these companies responsible for his son's death, although it is not immediately clear if there are any defenses available to these businesses under state or federal employment law.

Facing a multitude of construction litigation issues

The construction industry is beginning to see the turnaround in the national economy. Building both commercial and residential structures is starting to pick up again after years of slow growth. This is, obviously, a good thing - for the most part. The unfortunate reality of an increase in construction is the likelihood of a concurrent increase in construction litigation.

And, when it comes to construction litigation, there can seem to be no end to the potential problems that companies in Louisiana might face. Construction delays and defects can put an entire project in jeopardy, and controversies with engineers and subcontractors can be serious problems as well.

What is a "hostile acquisition"?

Mergers and acquisitions are complex business transactions that can puzzle even the most astute businessperson or entrepreneur. But, for many companies in Louisiana, these types of transactions can be the best way to expand into new territory or diversify holdings. Unfortunately, sometimes two businesses that might merge, or one that might acquire another, don't see eye-to-eye about the deal. That can result in what is termed a "hostile acquisition" under business law.

What is a hostile acquisition? Well, put simply, it is one company acquiring a new business that, at least at the management level, doesn't want to be acquired. When that happens, the acquiring business is usually left with two options. The first is to make an offer, known as a "tender offer," that would acquire the business in question for more than its share-value says it is worth. If this tender offer is rejected by the company's management, the offer could be taken directly to the shareholders.

The basics of business contracts

Businesses of all shapes and sizes will likely become party to a variety of contracts during the course of operation. Contracts are just part of business, including contracts with vendors, employment contracts and real estate contracts. So, companies in Louisiana should know some of the basics of business contracts.

First and foremost, every contract must have two important aspects: offer and acceptance. This means that both sides understand exactly what is being offered and by whom, and that after that there is a mutually recognized acceptance of the offer. Both sides must be able to fully understand the deal, and understand what is being exchanged, such as services, goods or cash.

Female employee alleges sexual harassment on the job

Employment litigation is just one of the many challenges that businesses in Louisiana will likely face at some point during the course of any given year. Although most companies do their best to institute policies and procedures that will, hopefully, prevent any type of discrimination or harassment in the workplace, the reality is that instances of this type of behavior can still occur.

According to a recent report, a company based out of New Orleans has been sued by a female employee who claims that she was subjected to sexual harassment in the workplace. The woman's lawsuit identifies both the company and an individual employee of the company as defendants. Her claim is that she was the victim of inappropriate touching in the workplace, and that she received unwanted sexual advances as well. If the claims are substantiated, both would constitute sexual harassment under employment law.

Helping businesses in Baton Rouge address employment law issues

Businesses in Baton Rouge will always have different issues to address on a day-to-day basis, but employment law issues can be particularly tricky. First and foremost, if the issue is based on a lawsuit filed by a former employee, there can be some immediate concerns regarding bad press based on the allegations - even if they are ultimately unsubstantiated. After that, there is the task of mounting a defense in employment litigation.

Besides defending against lawsuits filed by employees, employers can face a number of other issues in employment law. For some employers, issues like mass layoffs can trigger a number of concerns as employers attempt to comply with the law in Louisiana. Other employers may need help with the language to be included in non-compete agreements, while others will have concerns regarding federal disability law and how to comply.

Problems with wild animals leads to business dispute

For most companies in Louisiana, it is important to have the right space to conduct business. Retail locations, industrial parks and office space are just some examples of the needs that many companies face. And, when the space in question is provided by another business who then collects rent, there is likely an expectation in the agreement that the owner company will comply with the terms of the rental agreement. Unfortunately for one company in Louisiana, that wasn't the case. Business litigation is now the result.

A recent report details how Trainque Group LLC, the plaintiff in the lawsuit, is suing Johnson Storage & Moving Co. LLC for breach of contract. How did the defendant breach the contract? According to documentation, the plaintiff claims that wild animals were partly to blame and the defendant's failure to take care of the issue was the other part.

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