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Tempe Arizona Business Law Blog

Immigration audits and your company: Know how to act

In the current political atmosphere, both large and small companies have reason to fear an audit of their employee rosters by the authorities at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Some very well-known companies around the country have already fallen victim to the heightened level of enforcement of the rules -- to their detriment.

Experts are recommending that companies be proactive to head ICE off before you're subject to a random audit -- which can take place with all the abruptness of a raid if ICE has a warrant. That means:

How can tenants minimize problems with landlords over pets?

Pets are a big issue for both landlords and tenants. They can also cause a big problem between one tenant and another tenant if the animal isn't particularly well-behaved.

If you love your pet and want to avoid a problem, this is what you need to keep in mind:

Plan the succession of your family business with care

It's natural for parents to want to pass the fruits of their labors along to their children. Unfortunately, when that includes a family business, it's not always an easy task.

While family businesses are behind almost 80 percent of the new jobs being created, only about half of the owners expect to pass the reins to their children. Far fewer -- about a third -- will actually be successful at doing it. Without a solid plan for transferring the ownership and responsibilities, a business can falter under split leadership or suddenly be directionless.

Essentials of a commercial lease

When it comes to getting what you want in a commercial lease arrangement, the time to act is before you sign. With so many details involved with negotiating a lease, it can be hard to remember all of the points you should cover.

However, missing even one crucial point can increase the likelihood of disputes and litigation down the road. Here is a list of some essential points to cover when writing your lease.

The rules on security deposits in Arizona are expected to tighten

A new bill aimed at closing a big loophole in landlord-renter relationships is likely to pass and be signed into law very quickly in Arizona. That means big changes for renters who had the upper hand in the situation before now.

Under the current law, there was no time limit on a renter to bring a dispute over a security deposit into court. Security deposits are cash guarantees that a renter will leave the property pretty much as he or she found it -- minus reasonable wear and tear.

The rights of a shareholder in a business

What does it mean if you're a common shareholder in a business? Does your stake entitle you to anything beyond a dividend if the company starts to thrive?

Common shareholders actually take most of the risk when investing in a business. If it fails, they're the last ones who get paid. However, they also stand to get some big rewards through the increasing value of their shares if the company does well. That's why it's important to understand what your investment in common shares actually buys.

How do you legally deal with a tenant that hoards?

A tenant that hoards can be a real problem for landlords. The piles of useless items can put a tremendous weight on upper floors of a rental, make it impossible to service plumbing and electrical problems and hide all manner of vermin.

Unfortunately, it isn't always possible to simply evict a tenant for hoarding. Hoarding has been officially recognized as a disabling condition since 2013, when it entered the diagnostic manual of mental disorders used by psychiatrists. That means that hoarders have certain rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to ask for reasonable accommodations for their problem.

How do you stop a business foreclosure?

Your building may be the center of your business operations. For those who require specialized locations, like restaurants and factories, it can be very difficult to pick up shop and move to a new location.

Unfortunately, if your business gets into financial trouble and can't pay the loans secured by the property, that's exactly the situation you may face if the bank decides to foreclose.

Understand time-share risks and obligations before you sign

A timeshare is a unique type of real estate offering where people purchase shares of the property instead of the whole thing.

Unlike a property that's been left jointly to several people, timeshares are often owned by people that don't even know each other. The lure of the timeshare is that it allows people who could never afford a vacation home in a luxury spot to have that dream -- at least on a fixed schedule every year. Everyone who owns part of the property gets the use of it for their week or month, depending on how much they own.

Going to bring on a business partner?

Running a business has many challenges. You may not have a strong desire to take on all of these on your own. This may lead you to consider bringing on a business partner, someone to help share the load and collaborate with. Good business partnerships can bring a lot of success for companies. A troubled partnership, however, could pose real challenges for a business and make life more difficult for all of the partners. There are steps business owners can take to try to ensure a partnership falls into the first category rather than the second.

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