The Phantom Income Issue

When starting a new business, the question that every new venture faces is how to fund the operations of the business. Often times, one person agrees to contribute money, while the other person agrees to contribute services. This can lead to an issue known as “phantom income.”  Presently, the tax code places a value on capital contributed to a business, … Read More

Incontestable Trademarks

Federal trademark registration provides certain protections to businesses and other registrants who use and own trademarks and service marks to promote their goods and services. These protections are strengthened when a trademark becomes “incontestable” five years after its registration. Once a mark becomes incontestable, its validity cannot be challenged on a variety of grounds which often haunt other marks not … Read More

Put the “Self” Back into Self-Employed

Recent data available from the Census Bureau suggests that almost 11,000 Humboldt County residents identify as self-employed.  If you own and operate your own business, you’ve likely had occasion to consider California’s employment laws.  There is a great local resource for employers in Humboldt and Del Norte counties.  The Northcoast Employer’s Advisory Council meets regularly, typically in Eureka, to discuss … Read More

California’s New Sick Leave Law Now in Effect

As of July 1, 2015, California’s new sick leave law is in effect.  At this time, Humboldt County employers need a written policy that specifically caps sick leave, or they will be subject to the required statutory accrual rate of one hour of sick pay for every 30 hours worked. If you are a Humboldt County employer and do not know … Read More

Humboldt Needs to Be Ready for AB 266

Janssen Malloy LLP represents a number of local wine and craft beer businesses and has become familiar with the regulatory and licensing rules that must be followed in order for businesses to comply with the law and succeed.  Those rules and regulations have not applied to the marijuana industry in California.  But comprehensive marijuana regulation was a matter of time … Read More

Multi-Agency Enforcement Unit Issues Guidance

California’s Labor Employment Task Force (“LETF”) has just provided written guidance to employers about obligations for employing workers and what to expect during an inspection.  The LETF is a multi-agency enforcement task force in California charged with enforcing labor laws, particularly for underground employment industries, like car washes, restaurants, manufacturing, roofing, construction, agricultural and auto repair businesses.  For Humboldt County … Read More

Mitigation of Damages in Personal Injury Cases

In personal injury cases, a plaintiff is not entitled to recover damages for harm that a defendant proves the plaintiff could have avoided with reasonable effort.  This concept is known as the plaintiff’s duty to mitigate damages.  The rule of law is stated in the standard jury instruction on the topic “Mitigation of Damages,” found in the Judicial Council of … Read More

Estate Planning for Vacation Homes

When it comes to vacation homes, effective estate planning often centers more on emotional factors than the legal issues of the succession.  Developing a method to allow for one’s children and family to continue to use the family can be challenging. The current owner of the vacation home needs to determine how ownership will be held by the next generation. … Read More

Lessons in Equitable Easements

What is an equitable easement? An equitable easement is a judicially created doctrine that authorizes a trespasser to continue his or her trespass on another’s property in exchange for paying damages, where the hardship on the trespasser in ceasing the trespass is “greatly disproportionate” to the hardship on the land’s owner in losing use of the trespassed upon portion of … Read More

Medical Marijuana Use and Employment

While California law allows individuals to possess and use medical marijuana as prescribed by their physicians, its use and possession is still illegal under federal law and under California law without a valid prescription.  For California medical marijuana users and their employers, this legal framework complicates questions concerning employees’ rights to use prescribed medical marijuana and employers’ rights to discipline … Read More