Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

77 Days

It’s strange to realize that in just 77 days 2018 will come to an end. I just looked out the 5 goals I laid out for myself for the year, and only one of the is close to completion. Disheartened?  Not at all. Frustrated. Absolutely.  And I have no one to blame and so yet again I take responsibility.  So what were the reasons. Just as simple as not paying attention, and being distracted by latest shiny new idea and passion in my heart. I see a pattern. I start so many things, and in general I stick to them for a while, but it takes away from time for goals I have had for years.

For example, each year I say I will be able to do a pull up, run a marathon, publish a book, and be better with money, but somehow I manage to get to other things and now looking at my original 2018 goals, it hits me that I spent minimal time working on making these goals happen.  It always come down to the fact that until I take the small steps to get to those bigger goals, they will just remain ambitions and not actual things I have done.

Yet there is also a part of me that realizes that I also did many things that I am proud of.  Maybe its better these goals become news one for 2019, but if I am being honest 2018 served its purpose in teaching me patience, humility, and responsibility. How about you? How is 2018 treating you?

Happy Monday!

Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

Time

Each Monday is an opportunity to start over. I read somewhere the Buddha said the biggest misconception that we have is that we have time.  That comment hit me hard as I realized that I can either waste time or I can use it to help bring my vision to life. So what do I want to use time for? I want to use it to further relationships with loved ones. Not just family but those friends that  I have had for decades. To check in, and let them know they are being thought of. To also show the ones near me how much they mean to be and how grateful I am that they are in my life.

Then also there is being in service. Over the years, I have volunteered at many places, but not to brag but because I believe that it is important to know that anyone can have an impact on another’s life. I know so many who have in mine so why not continue that? Yet more and more I think about the quote and realize there is so much I have put off thinking I will have time for it and now I am 46. I wonder about my dreams at 18, then 21 and 30, have I been faithful to those ideals or did I just keep saying to myself I still have time? It’s a question I will grapple with this week.

How about you?  Happy Monday!

 

Business Law, Legal

What is the Best Legal Structure For Your Business?

Clients often come into my office and wish to start a business but are unsure what type of legal entity they wish to start. Here is a brief primer on the different types of legal structure one can be and their advantages.

Legal structures shape your journey as a business, and choosing the best structure for your company requires time and consideration. There are many types of business entities, each with its own pros and cons. Your choice can greatly affect the way you run your business, impacting everything from liability and taxes to control over the company.

The key is to figure out which structure gives your business the most advantages to help you achieve your organizational and personal financial goals. We’ve outlined the most popular business entities, and the factors to consider when choosing your business structure.

This is the simplest form of business entity. With sole proprietorship, one person is responsible for all of a company’s profits and debts.

This entity does not offer the separation or protection of personal and professional assets, which could prove to become an issue later on as your business grows and more aspects hold you liable.”

This entity is owned by two or more individuals. There are two types: general partnerships, where all is shared equally; and limited partnerships, where only one partner has control of its operation, while the other person or persons simply contribute to and receive only part of the profit. Partnerships carry a dual status as a sole proprietorship or limited liability partnership (LLP), depending on the entity’s funding and liability structure.

This entity is ideal for anyone who wants to go into business with a family member, friend or business partner, like running a restaurant or agency together. A partnership allows the partners to share profits and losses and make decisions together within the business structure. Remember that you will be held liable for the decisions made, as well as those actions made by your business partner.

A limited liability company is a hybrid structure that allows owners, partners or shareholders to limit their personal liabilities while enjoying the tax and flexibility benefits of a partnership. Under an LLC, members are protected from personal liability for the debts of the business, as long as it cannot be proven that they have acted in an illegal, unethical or irresponsible manner in carrying out the activities of the business.

The law regards a corporation as an entity separate from its owners. It has its own legal rights, independent of its owners – it can sue, be sued, own and sell property, and sell the rights of ownership in the form of stocks.

There are several types of corporations:

  • C corporations, owned by shareholders, are taxed as separate entities.
  • S corporations avoid this double taxation, much like partnerships or LLCs. Owners also have limited liability protection.
  • B corporations, otherwise known as benefit corporations, are for-profit entities structured to make a positive impact on society.
  • Closed corporations, typically run by a few shareholders, are not publicly traded and benefit from limited liability protection.
  • Nonprofit corporations exist to help others in some way and are rewarded by tax exemption.

For new businesses that could fall into two or more of these categories, it’s not always easy to decide which one to choose. You need to consider your startup’s financial needs, risk and ability to grow. It can be difficult to switch your legal structure after you’ve registered your business, so choosing correctly at the start is crucial.

You’ll want to ask yourself where your company is headed, and if your structure allows for it. Turn to your business plan to align your goals with the proper structure. Your entity should support the possibility for growth and change, not hold it back from its potential.

When it comes to startup and operational complexity, there is nothing simpler than a sole proprietorship. You simply register your name, start doing business, report the profits and pay taxes on it as personal income. However, it can be difficult to procure outside funding. Partnerships, on the other hand, require a signed agreement to define roles and percentages of profits. Corporations and LLCs have various reporting requirements with the state and federal governments.

A corporation carries the least amount of personal liability, since the law holds that it is its own entity. This means that creditors and customers can sue the corporation, but they cannot gain access to any personal assets of the officers or shareholders. A LLC offers the same protection, but with the tax benefits of a sole proprietorship. Partnerships share the liability between the partners as defined by their partnership agreement.

An owner of a LLC pays taxes just as a sole proprietor does: All profit is considered personal income and taxed accordingly at the end of the year. The LLC structure prevents that, and makes sure you’re not taxed as a company and as an individual.

Individuals in a partnership also claim their share of the profits as personal income. Your accountant may suggest quarterly or biannual advance payments to minimize the end effect on your return.

A corporation files its own tax returns each year, paying taxes on profits after expenses, including payroll. If you pay yourself from the corporation, you will pay personal taxes, such as for Social Security and Medicare, on your personal return for what you were paid throughout the year.

If it is important for you to have sole or primary control of the business and its activities, a sole proprietorship or an LLC might be the best choice for you. You can negotiate such control in a partnership agreement as well.

A corporation is constructed to have a board of directors that makes the major decisions to guide the company. A single person can control a corporation, especially at its inception, but as it grows, so does the need to operate it as a board-directed entity. Even for a small corporation, the rules intended for larger organizations – such as keeping notes of every major decision that affects the company – still apply.

If you need to obtain outside funding sources, like investor or venture capital and bank loans, you may be better off establishing a corporation, which has an easier time obtaining outside funding than does a sole proprietorship. Corporations can sell shares of stock, securing additional funding for growth, while sole proprietors can only obtain funds through their personal accounts, using their personal credit or taking on partners. An LLC can face similar struggles, although, as its own entity, it is not always necessary for the owner to use their personal credit or assets.

In addition to legally registering your business entity, you may need specific licenses and permits to operate. Depending on the type of business and its activities, it may need to be licensed at the local, state and federal levels.

It’s important to note that the structures discussed here only apply to for-profit businesses. If you’ve done your research and you’re still unsure which business structure is right for you, Friedman advises speaking with a specialist in business law.

For more information on the types of business structures you can choose, visit the Small Business Administration website or contact our Firm.

 

Inpsiration, Journal, Legal

October 1

It’s strange to think that in just three months, 2018 will come to an end. It hits me that after 9 months, there are so many goals I didn’t even get to, and perhaps it was a stretch to try to do so much. Yet it comes down to responsibility not as in blame, but in that instead of blaming others, my failure or lack of action was due to the choices I made and no one else.  It’s strange to even say 2019, but here it is. A futuristic sounding year, and I picture what it will look like. Will it be more of the same, or will I make gains in all areas of my life?

Again, it comes back to me. Everything I desire requires work and action from me not wishful thinking. If I want to improve relations with loved ones, I get to be present. If I want success in work, I get to do good work (the referrals will come), if I want to be in service, I get to show up and do those things. Over and over again, I am reminded that if I want change in my life, it comes down to my thoughts and actions. It has never been up to others or circumstances, those are just victim stories I can tell myself to give myself excuses.

Sure, life happens, but how I deal with it is still my choice. So 3 months to, I hope to end it with a bang!

Happy October (and Monday)

Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

Papa Lives

Missing Loved Ones Quotes Inspirational Even Through Tea Cake Is Gone Janie Still Loves Him And Believes Hes – QUOTES FAMOUS

Only in this morning quiet do the tears come. Images of Papa, Baby Maasi and Bebo flood me and my soul aches. My heart hurts. There hasn’t been a day when I haven’t thought about them. I tell myself time heals, but really all it does is that I don’t speak about them aloud anymore. The silence in my heart suffocates my mind. I wish I knew how to express what it means to lose loved ones in successive order. Each loss a reminder that at end of the day we only get one life to spend with them. Regret chokes me up. So many missed opportunities. So much time with petty anger and frustration instead of loving them in the best way possible.

The worst part is being surrounded by ones who don’t know that feeling and offer platitudes that can never salve my gaping soul. So I wake up everyday and give myself the allowance to miss them fully and know that they loved me with all my flaws. Each morning a new chance to feel gratitude and pain. My own private moment that I chose not to share those close to me.

The words that come to describe the losses small, insignificant to the pain in my heart. Even now. I feel overwhelmed at the grief, and the words do nothing but just make it worse. Yet I get up each day with the hope that at some point it will lessen, then I will be able to look out the kitchen and not see Papa reading the paper, Bebo waiting for her breakfast and my aunt sharing a cup of tea with mom.

So I sit here, aching, hurting, grieving, and then I shake it off and remember them for they always were: joyful, full of curiosity, and always open to sitting down and spending time. And I work to honor their memory, and realize that each day is a chance to remember them.

And so I love their memories, but I ache.

Business Law, employment law, Legal

What To Do When Firing an Employee in California

1. Documentation of the reason for termination

What is the reason for termination? Is there a company policy that was violated? [Note: Is the company policy in writing?  Has it been distributed to the employee?  Is there a signed acknowledgement of the policy in the employee’s file?]  Who was involved in termination decision? Review documentation for termination if “for cause” and ensure this documentation is maintained in personnel file.

2. Final pay and accounting

Employers need to prepare the employee’s final paycheck and ensure that any unused accrued vacation time is also included.

Final wages must be paid within certain time limits, including the following:

  1. An employee who is discharged must be paid all of his or her wages, including accrued vacation, immediately at the time of termination.
  2. An employee who gives at least 72 hours prior notice of quitting, and quits on the day given in the notice, must be paid all earned wages, including accrued vacation, at the time of quitting.
  3. An employee who quits without giving 72 hours prior notice must be paid all wages, including accrued vacation, within 72 hours of quitting.
  4. An employee who quits without giving 72-hours’ notice can request their final wage payment be mailed to them. The date of mailing is considered the date of payment for purposes of the requirement to provide payment within 72 hours of the notice of quitting.
  5. Final wage payments for employees who are terminated (or laid off) must be made at the place of termination. For employees who quit without giving 72 hours’ notice and do not request their final wages be mailed to them, is at the office of the employer within the county in which the work was performed.

Employers should also review if commissions, bonuses, or expense reimbursement owed to employee?  Obtain all expense reimbursement forms from employee.

Employers with multiple locations need to ensure that the final wages are made available.  The place of the final wage payment for employees who are terminated (or laid off) is the place of termination. The place of final wage payment for employees who quit without giving 72 hours prior notice and who do not request that their final wages be mailed to them at a designated address, is at the office of the employer within the county in which the work was performed. Labor Code Section 208.

 3. Company property and passwords

Obtain all company property from employee and reset passwords.  Also, has employee returned all company provided uniforms?  Have all company keys been returned?  The company should also develop a list of all passwords employee had access to and ensure the passwords are reset.

4. Final notices

Employers need to ensure that all required notices are provided to the employee.  For example, common notices include:

  • Notice to Employee as to Change in Relationship (download here)
  • For your Benefit (Form 2320) (download here)
  • COBRA and Cal-COBRA Notices from insurance provider
  • Notify insurance provider
  • Health Insurance Premium (HIPP) Notice (download here)

5. Retention of employee files

Employers need to take measures to secure and save employee’s file, wage, and time records.

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