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Baton Rouge Business and Commercial Law Blog

How can a Louisiana business protect its intellectual property?

Louisiana, like many other states, recognizes the need for companies to be able to protect intangible assets such as trade secrets that give their companies a competitive advantage over their competition.

The Uniform Trade Secrets Act has been adopted by most states. It legislates, defines and protects trade secrets. Generally speaking the legal definition of a trade secret is some piece of information which has economic value first, by not being generally known, and second, because it can reasonably be maintained a secret. The Uniform Trade Secrets Act is broad but can protect almost any information that gives the business an advantage in the market. While the following information is not legal advice, it should help companies understand how they can do their part in protecting their assets.

I have a construction dispute, what should I do?

When it is comes to construction disputes, it is important to understand that construction law is a very complex area that poses many challenges. Though business owners or individuals embroiled in a construction dispute may think they can handle the matter themselves, given the intricacies, the fact that multiple parties may be involved, and the general the complexity of this area of law, seeking legal advice may be beneficial.

Dunlap Fiore LLC has experienced lawyers who, regardless of the construction problem you are facing in your business, can examine and evaluate your case and provide legal options. Generally in construction settings, disputes can arise at any time between various entities involved on a project such as equipment suppliers, general contractors, subcontractors, engineers and more. Since construction projects go through different stages and general and subcontractors may rely on each other to finish one part of the project before the other part can be started, a dispute between two or more parties can adversely impact the entire project, causing significant delays.

Baton Rouge-based credit unions merge

Louisiana residents should be interested to know that after seeking viable merger candidates, Louisiana Farm Bureau Credit Union has officially merged with Pelican State Credit Union. Both firms are based in Baton Rouge.

News of the merger surfaced when officials at Louisiana Farm Bureau Credit Union announced the completed merger with Pelican State Credit Union firm. Officials at the firm announced that they had been seeking merger proposals from some the area's larger firms in order to expand and therefore better serve their clients.

Do you have questions about business law or government contracts?

Whether you are a business owner who is just starting out, an existing small business owner or a large corporation, more than likely in the course of your business operations you may be faced with a legal question which may require consultation with a business law firm. In today's dynamic business world contracts are an integral part of any business relationship, and may involve a business relationship with the government on a project. In some cases a business may also have to deal with government contractors and, depending on the nature of the project, this can get complex.

It is important for any business trying to secure a project to make sure that they take appropriate steps, such making a reasonable bid and following all regulations. This is especially true when it comes to getting a government contract. For example, when it comes to military construction contracts, one such regulation that all government contractors are required to follow is the Code of Business Ethics and Conduct.

Does FMLA apply to small-business owners?

The Family and Medical Leave Act - commonly known as FMLA - is a federal law that was enacted to protect employees from losing their jobs and health benefits if they need to take an extended period of time off due to health issues that affect either themselves or their immediate family.

FMLA doesn't cover any and all types of employees across the board. The types of employers that fall under the purview of FMLA include all public agencies such as state, federal and local government including public schools. In the private sector FMLA will only apply to an employer if its workforce consists of at least 50 employees and then only if that employee has been employed for a minimum of 20 work weeks during either the current or previous year.

Employment law: employee rights, employer responsibilities

Whether it is seasonal, temporary, part-time or full-time employment, most people at some point in their lives have held a job and either completed a written job application and/or undergone an interview process. We have all been there. However, how many people actually understand and know of their rights in an employment setting? Here is a quick overview of employment law, employee rights and employer responsibilities.

Employment law is a diverse area of law and encompasses various topics such as workplace safety, labor laws, wages, workplace discrimination and wrongful termination. Both federal and state laws may be applicable. In most cases, if an individual's employment is based on a valid employment contract, the terms contained in the contract govern. In such cases, state law applies.

Are mergers and acquisitions coming to a halt?

People in Baton Rouge may have heard that the mood on Wall Street has been downright jubilant following a string of mergers and acquisitions all year that have propelling revenue and investment returns for many shareholders. However, it looks like the great mergers and acquisitions boom of 2014 may have come to a screeching halt.

The first indicator was Rupert Murdoch's failed attempt to acquire Time Warner. The billionaire media mogul has been rebuffed by his target Time Warner, who even after making an $80 billion offer could not get Time Warner to express interest in a merger or make a counteroffer with his media company 21st Century Fox. When negotiations fell through with Time Warner, 21st Century Fox decided to spend $6 billion repurchasing its shares which probably exasperated the company's investment bankers.

Filming for well-known sitcom halted due to contract dispute

Louisiana residents who are fans of the sitcom "Big Bang Theory" will have to wait for fresh installments of the hit comedy series, because production has been tentatively halted by CBS due to ongoing contract negotiations with the actors.

The studio was ready to start filming the eighth season of the show when Warner Bros. Television announced that filming was not going to start on time; the studio did not announce a future date for filming to commence. The halt in production was a surprise, given that the network that airs the show, CBS, agreed in early 2014 to renew the show for at least three more seasons. This comes as no surprise, since the network counts the show as one of its prime time staples, given that it's the viewers' number one-rated comedy.

Louisiana ATC office facing employment law discrimination suit

Louisiana residents may find it interesting to know that heads of the Alcohol and Tobacco Control Commissioner as well as the ATC Office of the Commissioner have had a lawsuit filed against them in District Court alleging racial discrimination in the workplace.

The lawsuit has been filed jointly by three African-American employees who worked under the ATC Commissioner. In addition to the lawsuit each of the three individuals also filed separate Equal Employment Opportunity Commission complaints. In the lawsuit they allege that the current ATC Commissioner systematically worked to make their working conditions so intolerable that some had to take medical leave. In at least one case one employee felt that they had no recourse but to quit altogether.

Governor and Superintendent reach impasse in contracting dispute

Disputes in the business and government world can arise anytime. Resolving disputes such as contract disputes between parties may require legal expertise. Louisiana residents may be familiar with the stalemate over the Common Core academic standards between the Governor and the superintendent. As talks between the Governor and Superintendent are at an impasse, both may explore legal options to resolve the dispute.

Louisiana residents may find it helpful to learn that the legal dispute stems from a disagreement between the Governor and the Louisiana Board for Elementary and Secondary Education, represented by the State School Superintendent, over what types of school tests will be permissible in the upcoming school year.

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