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Author: Evon Spangler

Spangler and de Stefano PLLP > Articles posted by Evon Spangler (Page 2)

The Mistake of a Business Owner/Nonprofit Regarding Charitable Gambling

Giving back to the community and doing good is an essential part of the human experience. However, in doing so, you must make certain that you are in compliance with applicable laws. This article will explore the topic of lawful charitable gambling, which is complicated. Violating charitable gambling laws is a crime. First, for-profit businesses are not allowed to conduct lawful charitable gambling in Minnesota. The only organizations that can conduct lawful charitable gambling are registered nonprofit organizations (note: just because you are a nonprofit does not automatically mean your organization can conduct lawful charitable gambling). Second, there are only five...

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Tips and Tip Sharing

An employer cannot use tips (e.g., gratuities) that employees receive towards payment of minimum wage. In addition, an employer cannot require an employee to share tips with the employer or other employees. Nor can an employer require that an employee contribute any or all of the tips received into a fund or pool operated for the benefit of the employer or the employees. However, an employee can voluntarily share tips with other employees. If an employee voluntarily shares tips with other employees, who are indirect services employees (e.g., bus people, dishwashers, cooks or hosts), the voluntary tips that were received...

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Form I-9: Employment Eligibility

An employer is required to verify that an employee is authorized to work in the United States. Therefore, your job offer letter should be a conditional job offer that includes proof of employment eligibility. Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification) needs to be completed by each employee no later than the time of hire. Employers must complete the Form I-9 within three (3) business days of the date employment began. It is prudent to complete the Form I-9 the first date of employment to ensure that the deadline is met. Spangler and de Stefano, PLLP assists employers with making certain that there hiring...

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Proper Signing of a Contract in the Business Name

It is common for business owners not to understand the importance of signing the contract in the name of the business.  Failing to sign a business contract in the name of the business most likely means that the signor of the contract is personally liable for that contract as the contract was signed personally rather than by the business. It is important that you are properly signing a business contract.  The signature block should state the following: NAME OF BUSINESS (as registered with the Secretary of State) By: _____________________ (signature)                           ...

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Common Misconceptions About Probate and Estate Planning

It is not uncommon for a potential estate planning client to make a comment that they need to have a will done in order to avoid probate. Wills do not avoid probate. Even so, probate is not generally “a bad thing.” Probate is simply to settle the decedent’s debts and the lawful transfer of the decedent’s assets in accordance with the decedent’s wishes pursuant to a will or according to the intestate statute if the decedent does not have a will. With certain family dynamics or in cases where there are minor children, probate is oftentimes a good thing because...

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The Mistake of a Business Owner Regarding Secretary of State Filings

The details matter when it comes to the formation of your business entity, filing the initial documents with the Minnesota Secretary of State (“SOS”) and maintaining your registration with the Secretary of State for your entity business filings. About 25% of businesses who come to our firm seeking legal representation for their business entity have an inactive listing with the SOS because they have failed to renew their business entity. As a result of their failure to renew, after a relatively short period of time, the SOS administratively terminates the legal entity. As a result, your legal entity is not authorized...

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The Mistake of a Business Owner Regarding Personal Guarantees

Hypothetical: Jill owns Jill’s Donuts, Inc. She has been in business for 5 successful years, and she wants to expand. She believes that the expansion of the business is necessary and wise because she figures doing so will increase significantly increase her revenues. Jill’s Donuts, Inc. is approved for an SBA loan, which requires Jill to sign a personal guarantee. In addition, when Jill goes to the landlord to request additional space, the landlord agrees to a new lease for the expanded space (with increased rent). The new lease with the expanded space is in Jill’s name as that is...

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The Stakes Have Risen: Criminal Consequences for Wage/Hour Violations

Unbeknownst to most employers (note: ignorance of the law is not a valid defense), there are numerous violations in employment law that have criminal consequences. The stakes have risen as the 2019 Minnesota legislature passed sweeping wage and hour “reform” laws that have increased potential criminal consequences for employers. The crime of “wage theft” was added to the existing criminal laws. “Wage theft” occurs “when an employer with the intent to defraud: i) fails to pay an employee all wages, salary, gratuities, earnings, or commissions at the employee’s rate or rates of pay or at the rate or rates required...

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New Requirements for Paystubs

The 2019 Minnesota legislative session made sweeping and significant changes to wage and hour laws, including requiring additional information on employees’ paystubs or earnings statements. The previous law required that paystubs include the name of the employee, total hours worked by the employee in the pay period, the gross pay amount earned by employee in the pay period, the net pay amount after deductions have been made, the deductions made from the employee’s pay, the date the pay period ended, and the employer’s legal and operating name. The new law requires several additional requirements. In addition to the requirements above, now...

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Review Your Contracts Prior to Signing

It is important that you review any business contracts and leases prior to signing, and that you seek the advice of an experienced business attorney prior to signing. While every provision in a contract is important, here is a list of the top five provisions that oftentimes do not get the close attention needed in an business owner's review of a contract or lease: Are you limited to arbitration to resolve any claims? If you are limited to arbitration, then you will not be able to seek any relief in court. Which state’s laws apply to your contract or lease?...

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