Ehline Law Blog about Business Law

Dec 24, 2019

Suing California Over its Freelance Writer Law

Destroying Jobs Through a Government Mandate The law states that California residents who rely on writing for a living will face severe restrictions. In fact, writers in the state organized a group, CA Freelance Writers United to fight the changes going into effect on January 1, 2020. According to AB5, the state's law, freelancers who live in the Golden State could not write more than 35 articles per year unless the company hires them as an outright employee. For writers that depend on this income for their livelihoods, this may ultimately destroy their jobs. I worked my way up the employment chain the old fashioned way. From the Marine Corps to a variety of blue collar jobs, I hate the idea that the state might restrict the ability of the average person to get ahead. Even worse, thousands of writers across the state will lose their jobs-- or at least a large chunk of their income when this bill becomes law. All of this is profoundly unfair and represents why California is in so much trouble as a whole. What are My Legal Options? This is a crucial question in the days before the law goes into effect. Not every freelance site and newspaper can afford to add employees to the payroll and pay for worker's comp, additional insurance, and payroll taxes. In addition, this new law turns upside down the traditional relationship between writers and their publishers. For starters, the Freelancers United Group may be launching a class action lawsuit against the state for their actions. Furthermore, a regular civil case may not be what is in order here. Instead, a determined effort to get the law overturned as unconstitutional is perhaps the best order of the day. Altogether, such a law undermines the average person's ability to make a living. That is unacceptable. For the effects of the law and more coverage, keep reading our legal blog here.

Dec 23, 2019

How Liable is Ring for its Camera Hacks?

Surprisingly Lax Security for a Home System Ring is in deep trouble after a number of its camera systems across the country were hacked. The company's poor management is a major disgrace. Such a camera system monitors the home. A breach represents several violations of privacy. First, it risks a break in because the camera is not working. Second, the intimate moments of a family are exposed to the hacker. Third, the company's promises are all moot. All of these are terrible. If you are considering a Ring camera system for Christmas, you already know the answer. The systems on the shelf right now are not acceptable. Furthermore, any potential fix may be hacked, as well. Since this is likely both a hardware and software issue, it won't be an easy fix. Ring must be open with the public at every stage of this crisis. The Verge published an interesting article on the company's lack of understanding. Not just about its product, but about the scandal itself. Ring is blaming the victim. After the recent revelations, this is extreme. In fact, there is no two factor security, unlike major email providers. Furthermore, once the hacker gets in they can access all previously recorded videos. Liable for Negligence While there is more info still to come out, Ring appears to be liable for its own negligence. In fact, the Verge article above found that Ring does not cross check passwords lost in leaks. This oversight alone opens it up to massive lawsuits. Furthermore, the company blames the customers for the hacks. Ring asked its customers to implement security check ups it should have done in the first place. A lack of a comprehensive update is rife with risk. In addition, this also lets potential hackers know that the company won't be fixing the issue anytime soon. For more info on these hacks and other security breaches, keep reading our legal opinions blog.

Dec 23, 2019

Ring Camera Hack: Is Your House Safe?

Hack Left 8 Year Old Terrified The hack of a Ring camera system in Mississippi is national news. A hacker gained access to the family's system and told their daughter that he was Santa Claus. The camera maker is on the defensive and there is a massive law enforcement effort to catch the hacker. Worse, this isn't the only case. Even worse, the camera system is currently hackable. Newsweek ran a column recently on the hack, explaining how owners determine if their camera was hacked. The incident in Mississippi was just one of a growing number across the country. In addition, the Today show had a segment on the creepy incident, which left the family scared: Legal Ramifications Of course, with an incident so severe and attention grabbing, there are severe consequences. The most direct fall upon the perp himself. If caught, he faces a variety of criminal and civil punishments for his actions. Furthermore, the manufacturers of the Ring camera system may also be liable. There is an implicit promise of security in such a device. However, if the camera makers knew of a possible defect yet sold it to the public anyway, they carry legal risk. There is more evidence yet to emerge from this case. However, the early indication is that this is an open and shut case of negligence on behalf of the camera company. Understanding that such an exploitable flaw existed is enough for the family to seek a substantial settlement. In addition, poor systems undermine the company's reputation. All of these factors are simply unacceptable. Lastly, more info is trickling out. For more info on this and similar cases, read our legal blog on this site. We will update this and similar stories as they develop. Furthermore, our experts analyze each story on a case by case basis.

Jan 6, 2019

Simple Ways for Business Owners to Reduce Personal Injury Claims Liability

business strategy concept infographic diagram illustration of corporate culture components
business strategy concept infographic diagram illustration of corporate culture components Running a small business is a dream for millions of Americans. Some can stake it out and open up an office or storefront to sustain their family. When facing such a decision, it is vital to learn from the experiences of other entrepreneurs. Many lessons are only evident from failures. And these can become gleaned from unsuccessful ventures and their challenges. Growing businesses have many moving parts involved, and any such organizations have potential weaknesses. To minimize the chances of vulnerability, businesses can take simple steps. Below are some helpful tips that we've seen in various industries and how you can protect yourself: Why Should Businesses Embrace Technology? Technology can be a fundamental role in your bottom line. Not only can many automizing aspects of your business reduce your expenses and maximize profit ratios, but it can also act to prevent potential liability. By enabling computers to take orders, create 24-hour access on websites, and replace old technology, your business can become a local leader. Many of these time and money saving measures can also prevent future lawsuits. Instead of having to deal with employees that make mistakes or get into car accidents, a computer cannot put you in such a situation. Furthermore, there are reduced chances of issues such as theft and fraud. Besides the point, the general trend has been towards technological change, and any hesitation could cause your enterprise to fall behind. Why Not Form an LLC? Reducing personal liability in your venture is essential. Many businesses are run as private enterprises. And often they are led by people with little previous business experience. By forming a Limited Liability Corporation a sole proprietor or partners would be able to reduce their exposure to future lawsuits and bankruptcy. The act of incorporating will inoculate the owners against much risk, with little downside. LLCs are not run the same as larger corporations. There isn't the same regulation occurring or dealing with many corporate board members. The small size of an LLC leads to mobility and maneuverability. It allows for potential rapid growth and ability to adapt to quickly changing conditions. Many businesses become incorporated in the state of Delaware due to its business-friendly regulations. Corporation law varies by state, and any decision should be made in consultation with an attorney. How Do You Prevent the Notice of Claim? After running your business for a while, you may be served with a notice of claim stating that a part of your enterprise is not safe. Any part of your business that is open to the public must be safe. Issues such as: Broken stairs Dripping water Broken or defective products can be cited for their danger to the public. A notice of claim could be the first step before a lawsuit. Reducing the factors that could compel such notes should be a no-brainer. How to Create Proper Liability Waivers By creating a means to limit your liability, you will be amazed at how it affects your business operations. Creating liability waivers crafted with the help of a skilled business attorney can be a science. Forming language that will both explain the potential consequences of taking part in your business and compelling a signature is key. Such agreements aren't always ironclad in court. But the closer they can get using precedent and knowledge of corporate law the better. Many courts will look at the extent of how you attempted to reduce risk to consumers as well as your warnings. Furthermore, you reduce the chance of legal action. And customer satisfaction should increase as well. Ultimately, these are just part of the actions a business can take to reduce your tort liability. There are always litigious people in every field and the possibility of a suit. Any activities you can choose to overcome such a chance are par for the course in the area of business.

Dec 9, 2017

An Approach for Attorneys and Clients In Dealing With Online Communications

Today we’re going to take a practical look at the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility and their recommendations for communications. These are tips for attorneys new to the field or more experience. Regardless of your years in law, we have a few ideas for you. Not every single bit of communication is the same but offers an insight into some general rules. For the most part, attorneys should consider their messages, and: The content of the message itself, including sensitive or private information. How are they organized? The practicality of improving or introducing new email security standards. The overall risk of this communication being intercepted or read by someone not authorized. What is the impact your communications with all of your clients: large and small, routine and more involved. As you can imagine, all of this put together is a bit of a puzzle for an attorney not specialized in web or comm security. In some instances, this means that the lawyer's office hires outside help. However, in others, there are several key steps your firm acts on internally. Each one makes a key difference. Taking Plaintive Steps This is why the ABA and other organizations ask about the way data is handled. Also, many attorneys have no or just cursory training in these matters. However, you only have so much time or money. Consider the following: Who handles your information? What is their info security training? What is your email routing method? Does your site use https protocol? Is sensitive data labeled or treated as such? Consider means of securing this type of data separately. Is this in line with your communications and privacy policy? Every firm worth its salt has one making your files more secure and inspires confidence in your clients. They notice. Each attorney should read and digest the new Model Rules of Professional Conduct. This provides a key backdrop for lawyers in just about any field to prepare themselves for recent and upcoming changes. Also, changing to a uniform, secure email or communications network allows for less juggling between different systems and less to consider for each client. Often, firms utilize a secure cloud-based solution for their needs. Besides, even for those without a lot of cash on hand, have options. Utilize Google Drive and Dropbox as their primary or secondary mode of such use. Each is free usage. Furthermore, keep each in mind as you proceed. This list isn't comprehensive. However, it allows firms of all sizes a jumping-off point in making their communications ones that can and should be above reproach or worry. In time, this pays for itself many times over. One less thing on your plate. Furthermore, each bit of security is key for your firm.

Oct 30, 2017

What are Some of the Benefits of a Las Vegas Corporation?

Weighing all the Options Opening in Las Vegas Las Vegas is certainly a microcosm of the United States. There are so many advantages to Sin City and things to consider. If you or someone you know wants to incorporate a business, you may wish to consider LV. Below we review a number of factors that play a role in your decision making process. The State of Nevada is known as a corporate haven across the nation. Businesses incorporate under Article 78 of the Nevada Revised Statutes. Las Vegas has a rich access to infrastructure. Being just three hours from Los Angeles, it can act both as its own entity and an extension of California. Nevada law is particularly protective of corporate officials. In particular, if a company operates in California but is chartered in Nevada, the latters' law applies. Furthermore, Nevada's laws also prevents many companies from hostile takeovers. Nevada is a state with no franchise, corporate, or personal income tax. The state does charge a $200 business license fee for corporations but this is much lower than applicable CA taxes. This also allows disputes over corporate issues to be settled within Nevada District Courts and appealed to the Supreme Court of Nevada. This enabled protections beyond those of other states. Very Friendly for New and Existing Businesses All of these factors and more allows Nevada to be, in some ways, even more business friendly than Delaware. Inc Magazine has several key reasons to move your business to Las Vegas, as well. These include the area's low cost of living, tax advantages, joining a growing city, and taking part while property in the area is less expensive. All of these add up to a very compelling number of reasons. This list is by no means comprehensive. However, we hope that the info included and our experience will allow you to make a better decision.