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Cincinnati Business and Commercial Litigation Legal Blog

Cincinnati's Salary Equity Ordinance to go into effect in 2020

Cincinnati City Council passed its new Salary Equity Ordinance on March 13 with a vote of 6-2. It's set to go into effect in March of 2020. Once it does, all employers will be prohibited from asking prospective employees for a salary history when they respond to job ads, on applications and during interviews.

A ban like the one passed in Cincinnati is fairly unique. So far, lawmakers in only 11 states have made it illegal for prospective employees to be asked for their salary histories. Only 11 counties or cities have moved forward in passing similar types of legislation themselves.

What are some key details to include in a consulting agreement?

In recent years, many entrepreneurs have chosen to offer their talents to others on a freelance basis as opposed to holding a traditional role with just one company. Consultants who do this should remember that by taking on work on a project basis, they're not anyone's employee. Protections extended to a company's workers don't cover them. This is why it's important that they have a consulting agreement in place with each client.

Early in the consulting agreement, you'll want to describe what your relationship with the person contracting you to perform the work, your client, is. In many cases, working as a consultant to a company means that no taxes will be withheld from your check. How your relationship is defined in this section of the agreement may affect whether you qualify to file self-employment taxes, for example.

Tips for setting yourself on the road to a successful business

As you grew up, you may have known that you did not want to sit around helping others achieve their dreams while yours sat by the wayside. As a result, now that you are an adult, you want to become the entrepreneur you always wanted to be and set yourself up to achieve your career dreams.

You likely already know that building your own business can have its difficulties, and you certainly want to set yourself up on the right foot from the get-go. Understanding how to help yourself may allow you to feel more in control as you work to get your business off the ground.

There are many pros to setting up a limited liability company

One of the most difficult things to do as a business owner is to make a decision as to what type of entity you want to incorporate as. Setting up a limited liability company (LLC) is the go-to choice for many entrepreneurs. They appreciate how easy it is to set one up, how it provides them with built-in liability protection and the tax benefits it affords.

LLCs cannot be double taxed. Those who own other types of business entities such as C-Corps are often taxed in a personal capacity and as a corporation when it comes time to file in April of each year.

Common examples of unintentional executor misconduct

Most people who are chosen to be executors of a loved one's estate aren't estate planning attorneys. However, they have legal obligations under Ohio probate laws. You don't want to run afoul of those laws.

Unfortunately, some people unknowingly engage in what is known as "executor misconduct." Let's look at some common examples of types of unintentional executor misconduct and how to avoid them.

What is the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act?

Genetic testing has made massive strides in recent decades. People are now able to determine whether they're at risk for a multitude of diseases and conditions, including certain types of cancer, Parkinson's disease and bipolar disorder.

Knowledge can be power for someone who discovers that they have a higher-than-normal risk of developing a particular disease. They may undergo earlier and more frequent screenings, for example, than would normally be recommended. However, in the hands of others, this information can be used to discriminate against someone.

Congress considers bill that would help fight age discrimination

It may seem like Democrats and Republicans in Congress can't agree on anything these days. However, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in the House and the Senate are championing proposed legislation that would make it easier for older workers to file employment discrimination lawsuits.

The Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act (POWADA) would essentially reverse a decade-old Supreme Court ruling that made it more difficult for people who were demoted or laid off to file an age discrimination claim against their employers. That 5-4 high court ruling placed the burden for proving age discrimination on the plaintiff. This was a change from the previous requirement that the employer show a legitimate reason for their actions.

How do internal versus external corporate structures differ?

As your Cincinnati company grows larger, it's easy for its leadership to lose track in managing all of its obligations. That's why it's important for there to be a corporate governance structure to be in place to help you manage internal and external aspects of your Ohio business.

Internal corporate governance

Choosing the right business entity makes a difference

Like many in Ohio, you may have reached the point in your career where you are tired of working for someone else, and may be thinking of venturing off on your own. If you are thinking about starting a new business, it's important to understand that doing so involves more than just launching a website and selling your product or service. There are legal issues to address, including taxes and liability.

Examining how you want to deal with these types of issues will help determine the business entity you need.

How can I free my Ohio company from its existing lease?

When most Ohio business owners sign a lease, many are so excited to have found a place that they sign their name on the line without combing through its terms or trying to negotiate a more favorable agreement. It's only when they find they've bitten off a little more than they can chew that a Cincinnati company owner will consult with an attorney to find out what they can do to get out of their commercial lease as painlessly as possible.

One valid reason that you may be able to get your company released from their lease is if your landlord breaches the contract that you signed in some kind of "substantive" way. If they promised to fix a serious construction defect such as the building's leaking roof, yet their failure to do so resulted in it caving in, then this may be considered a major breach of contract.

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