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Dallas Business Litigation Blog

Uber reaches settlement in contract dispute with drivers

When someone works for another individual or company, the individual may not necessarily be considered an employee. In some cases, workers may be classified as independent contractors, and they do not obtain many of the same benefits as employees. Still, these workers often operate under contracts, and in some cases, contract disputes could arise if workers believe they have been misclassified.

Texas readers may be interested in a years-long dispute involving Uber and its drivers, who are classified as independent contractors. According to reports, two Uber drivers filed a class action lawsuit in 2013 claiming that categorizing them as independent contractors was an effort by Uber to avoid paying drivers minimum wage and to avoid providing benefits. Though the lawsuit was granted class action status, an appeals court later ruled that Uber's arbitration agreements were enforceable.

Having a plan can help with business collection

Texas business owners have a lot on their plates. When just starting out, it can seem like staying in the black financially is the most important goal in order to keep the company afloat. As a result, when clients or customers do not pay outstanding balances, company owners may feel panicked about what to do. After all, they need the revenue. Fortunately, there are various ways to handle business collection.

When trying to collect on a debt, it is important that serious but not threatening actions are taken. In some cases, simply notifying a client or customer that a bill is overdue could be enough to remind the person that a payment had been missed. In other cases, it may not be as simple, but there are still options for working toward obtaining a payment.

Common mistakes businesses make around IP

Someone who is working on getting their first business off the ground has a lot to juggle. There’s paperwork to file, people to hire and a budget to oversee.

Because of the hectic nature of realizing a business, many owners do not realize the importance of proper intellectual property (IP) management until it’s too late. Here are some of the most common mistakes new businesses make with their IPs:

Shareholder disputes can turn ugly, cause damage to companies

When internal issues arise in a company, it is not unusual for predicaments to become difficult to handle. In some cases, shareholder disputes may lead to a need for serious repercussions, including letting high-ranking employees go. Of course, the ordeal may not end at the termination of an employee, and litigation could take place.

Texas readers may be interested in a lawsuit currently underway in another state. According to reports, the CEO and president of a milking equipment firm was dismissed from the company after he carried out questionable actions after a conflict over bonus payments. Apparently, the termination took place because the man began trying to convince other high-ranking employees to leave the company and undermining the company's owners. These actions reportedly began after the man received a bonus in 2015 but did not in years after, purportedly causing bitterness toward the company.

"Fearless Girl" statue at center of intellectual property dispute

When a piece of artwork is created for a specific purpose, some issues of ownership could potentially result. Does the image beyond the specific piece belong to those who commissioned the work? Does it belong to the artist who created it? In some cases, the lines may blur, and intellectual property disputes could arise.

Texas readers may be interested in such a dispute currently underway in another state. According to reports, the dispute revolves around the "Fearless Girl" statue that was placed on Wall Street in front of the "Charging Bull" statue. Apparently, the artist who created "Fearless Girl" made replicas of the statues and sold at least three of them. The report indicated that the investment firm that commissioned the original work has filed a lawsuit against the artist, claiming breach of contract and trademark infringement.

Intellectual property dispute involves Kanye West

People do not have to be famous in order to pursue copyrights or other protections. In fact, it is often wise for anyone who creates an original work to obtain those rights in order to work toward preventing others from using it without authorization. Of course, intellectual property violations do occur, and many people have to take legal steps to seek restitution.

Texas readers may be interested in a copyright infringement case involving musical artist Kanye West. According to reports, the family of a young girl filed the lawsuit after West used the young girl's prayer in one of his songs. The prayer went viral online after a video was posted of the girl saying the prayer before she, her guardian and her biological mother went on a trip. Representatives for West reportedly contacted the girl's biological mother to request to use the prayer, and the mother agreed as long as payment would be issued.

Common reasons for partnership disputes

Texas business partners have important professional relationships. Often, the smooth operations of the company depend on this relationship working in sync. If partnership disputes come about, the individuals involved often need to find the best method of resolution before the rift causes damage to the company.

Signs of issues can present themselves in many ways. One example is if a partner seems off his or her game or less involved than usual. If anyone shows a decline in performance, business operations could suffer, and when those performance issues come from a partner, the repercussions could be even more destructive. In some cases, a partner may be feeling burned out and need a vacation, but in others, the partner may need to face disciplinary action.

Zoning issues could lead to real estate disputes

Owning or renting commercial property can help businesses operate in their desired locations. Of course, a perfect location could come with issues, especially if residents nearby have complaints. Unfortunately, serious complaints could result in real estate disputes that lead to legal issues.

Business owners or developers in Texas certainly do not want to have their operations hindered by disputes, and it is wise to recognize common zoning issues that could result. For instance, residents in the area may take issue with buildings that are too tall or signage that is too big. The placement of buildings and signage could also cause problems if the residents feel that the area is becoming cluttered or otherwise less aesthetically pleasing because of issues like sun blockage or the signs being eyesores.

Rihanna sues her dad for intellectual property infringement

Owning a business often means coming up with ways to make the company and its products recognizable. In many instances, that means coming up with a name and trademarking that name so that others cannot use it and cause confusion among consumers. However, a trademark may not prevent intellectual property infringement.

Texas readers may be interested in a current lawsuit involving singer and business owner Rihanna and her father. According to reports, the singer has accused her father of infringing on her trademark by using the name "Fenty" for his entertainment business. Fenty is the last name of both Rihanna and her father, but Rihanna apparently trademarked the name after she began using it for her cosmetics brand, Fenty Beauty, and other business ventures in 2012.

Important considerations when looking for a commercial lease

Dallas real estate is always in demand. That can make finding a commercial lease a little intimidating, and cause new businesses to jump on the first available rental.

However, when considering a commercial lease, it’s important to make sure it fits what your business is looking for. Here are some important factors to consider:

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