Employment Law – Each and every Texas employer should familiarize himself or herself with both state and federal employment law. Failure to comply with employment requirements can result in civil and/or criminal liability, and ignorance of the law is no defense. Due to the complexity of employment law and the possible consequences of violating these laws, it is recommended that an attorney be consulted prior to opening any business.
At Lindsay, Lindsay, and Parsons we have years of experience and would be happy help set up any new business, as well as advise employers about their duties and responsibilities. One important legal tool available to employers that both new and experienced business owners are often unaware of is the non-compete agreement. For many employers, a non-compete agreement is a vital instrument that prevents employees from leaving to work for a competitor. This area of the law has numerous technical requirements. The lawyers of Lindsay, Lindsay and Parson’s years of experience in this area of the law can make all the difference as to whether this agreement is enforceable.
In Texas, an employer has several duties to its employees. Some of these duties include, but are not limited to: not damaging the reputation of an employee; providing a reasonably safe work place; accurately recording wages and timely paying those wages; informing an employee about job duties and risks; and not requesting an employee engage in any illegal action. A way not only to inform your employees of their rights but also of their duties and your expectations of them is to produce an employee handbook. An employee handbook is an invaluable tool to any employer, and is something that Lindsay, Lindsay, and Parsons would be glad to assist in creating or revising.
In general, Texas is an “employment-at-will” state. This means than an employer can fire an employee for any non-discriminatory reason. Texas law requires no advance notice by an employer to an employee of their termination, nor by an employee to an employer that he or she intends to quit. However, Lindsay, Lindsay and Parsons recommends that employers conduct an exit interview upon termination of an employee with a witness present. This step can eliminate the administrative issues that can arise due to an end in employment.
In Texas, examples of conduct upon which termination of an employee cannot be based include, but are not limited to: jury service; military leave; voting; or for discrimination against a protected class. Should you have any questions about whether or not termination of an employee is illegal or would subject your company to civil liability, please feel free to schedule a consultation with the lawyers at Lindsay, Lindsay and Parsons to discuss your rights.
In addition to providing assistance with all the areas mentioned above, Lindsay, Lindsay, and Parsons is also available to serve as a registered agent for your business. This means that legal documents can be served upon Lindsay, Lindsay, and Parsons. We serve in this capacity for numerous businesses in the area. Among other advantages, serving as your business’ registered agent will put Lindsay, Lindsay, and Parsons in a position to answer and defend any lawsuit against you. Furthermore, we will be in a unique and invaluable position to take any and all actions necessary to protect your business and your rights.
If you are just starting a business or have questions about your existing business, we would encourage you to contact our office to schedule a free consultation to discuss how best to protect both you and your business.
Forming a corporation or company can be an advantageous endeavor for both small and large businesses. One of the significant advantages is that incorporation can protect the owner or owners of a company from personal liability in a way that forming a sole proprietorship or partnership cannot.
There are a number of steps that must be taken to form and maintain a corporation, which Lindsay, Lindsay and Parsons can assist you with. Some of these have been identified below.
Choosing a name:
You must choose an available name for your company. We will assist you in determining name availability with the Secretary of State. In addition, we can assist you with obtaining a trademark for that name.
A corporation in Texas must have at least one director. We will assist you in drafting your bylaws to coincide with you intentions regarding how many directors your company should have and any requirements you may choose to impose on them.
Filing with the Secretary of State:
We will assist you in preparing the Certificate of Formation required to be filed with the Secretary of State in order to form a corporation and will communicate with the Secretary of State on your behalf.
Creation of corporate bylaws:
We will assist you in creating your corporation’s bylaws. The bylaws set out the policies, procedures, and the structure of the corporation and include information such as the existence and responsibilities of the officers.
A corporation is required to hold annual meetings and to keep a corporate notebook memorializing this as well as any major changes to the corporation’s structure. We will assist you throughout the years in maintaining these notebooks and complying with the requirements.
An option other than forming a corporation is to form a limited liability company. Many of the requirements are the same as a corporation. Often, however, a limited liability company can offer tax advantages that a corporation cannot. Whether or not a corporation or a limited liability company is best for your business is a case specific determination and should often be addressed with a tax professional.