How to Avoid the Nightmare of Giving Up Business Ownership

Business Attorney in Los AngelesContinuing from our last post, Pitfalls of Giving Up Equity in a Business Venture, Ownership of your business is key. It is the symbol of your own hard work and passion, and security for the success of your future decisions. The more ownership you give up, the more you assume the responsibilities to other parties who can hold up your progress, especially if they have selfish or malicious intentions.

Don’t make life more complicated. It at all possible, avoid giving away ownership. To help you in this key strategy, here are some basic tips:

  1. Work with you attorney to develop a rock solid Buy-Sell Agreement that protects your interests and decision making capabilities.
  2. Include stock option plans, profit participation programs, bonuses, and incentive-based programs to mitigate equity grants.
  3. Evaluate key man insurance, disability policies, and other strategies that emphasize employee benefits without giving away ownership.

(more…)

Make Sure Your Agreements Are in Writing

Real Estate Attorney in Woodland HillsA recent California Court of Appeals decision once again demonstrated how important it is to always get your agreements in writing.  While the decision was in the context of a real estate broker’s claim for a commission, the basic principle can be applied to all agreements.

In its decision which was issued on December 1, 2016, the California Court of Appeal reiterated the long-standing rule in California that a real estate broker’s claim for commission is not enforceable unless the agreement to pay that commission is in writing.  In the case that was before the Court,  the buyers told their broker friend that they were looking for a home.  Being a good friend, he agreed to assist and represent them in their search for which he was to be paid a commission.  Being “friends”, they did not bother to put that agreement in writing.  The broker found a home for the Buyers and made two offers on  their behalf.  The Seller made counteroffers, at which point the Buyers then asked their attorney, also a broker, to assist them.  Their attorney then made an offer on their behalf for the same property, which was accepted.  When his claim for a commission was rejected, the original broker sued for his $925,000.00 commission. (more…)

Walking Away Equally Unhappy

Event: ProVisors Panel on Negotiation
Venue: Calabasas Country Club
Location: Calabasas, Los Angeles, Ca
Speaker: Attorney Douglas Schreiber of Anker, Hymes & Schreiber, LLP

Transcription:

There is something that I constantly heard over and over again from judges when you would be at a settlement conference. Every judge would give the lecture and I’m sure every lawyer who is in this room has been in front of a judge at some kind of settlement conference has heard it: (more…)

Business Disputes and Succession Planning

Event: ProVisors Panel on Negotiation
Venue: Calabasas Country Club
Location: Calabasas, Los Angeles, Ca
Speaker: Attorney Douglas Schreiber of Anker, Hymes & Schreiber, LLP

Transcription:

I come into the negotiation process typically in a slightly different situation. Mark is looking to build a relationship. By the time I usually get involved, I’m looking to get rid of a relationship, quite honestly:
(more…)

What To Do in a Heated Negotiation

Event: ProVisors Panel on Negotiation
Venue: Calabasas Country Club
Location: Calabasas, Los Angeles, Ca
Speaker: Attorney Douglas Schreiber of Anker, Hymes & Schreiber, LLP

Business Attorney Doug Schreiber of Anker, Hymes and Schreiber, LLP answers the question of what to do when things get heated in a negotiation.

Transcription:

Mediator: What do you do in a contentious situation? This sounds like everybody’s having a great time and you can figure out must haves, and you can walk away. What do you when it’s contentious?

Attorney Doug Schreiber: That happens a lot. You try to backup and find some form of agreement.   If it’s a situation where you are arguing over an amount of money, maybe you back away from the amount and talk potential about terms. (more…)

Be Willing to Walk Away in a Negotiation

Event: ProVisors Panel on Negotiation
Venue: Calabasas Country Club
Location: Calabasas, Los Angeles, Ca
Speaker: Attorney Douglas Schreiber of Anker, Hymes & Schreiber, LLP

Transcription:

Be willing to walk away. That sometimes is the most powerful tool in any negotiation. The ability and willingness to walk away.

Recently my law firm, settled a case where we had been at a mandatory settlement conference in front of a judge. He pounded on us and pounded on us to settle for an amount which was way above our bottom line.

What did we do? (more…)

Art of Negotiation: Starting and Pressure Points

Event: ProVisors Panel on Negotiation
Venue: Calabasas Country Club
Location: Calabasas, Los Angeles, Ca
Speaker: Attorney Douglas Schreiber of Anker, Hymes & Schreiber, LLP

Transcription:

Before you go into a negotiation you need to be prepared:

  • What are your needs?
  • What are your wants?
  • What are the other sides weaknesses or pressure points?

I focus a lot on #3.  Here is a great example: (more…)

Business Attorney Los Angeles Video

Protecting a business, property or personal wealth is an important consideration for many people. At Anker, Reed, Hymes, Schreiber and Cohen, A Law Corporation, we pride ourselves on being a different kind of law firm – one that measures success by its value to clients. Since 1974, our firm has provided business law, real estate, estate planning and litigation services to individuals, families and businesses throughout Southern California.

Alternative Minimum Tax: The Effect on Itemized Deductions

 

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This is also part of third section of  Anker Reed HSC’s blog series entitled “To Incorporate or Not to Incorporate? That is the Question” regarding the alternative minimum tax and its effect on medical and miscellaneous itemized deductions.

An additional issue with regard to the deductibility of both medical and miscellaneous itemized deductions is the imposition of the Alternative Minimum Tax. “Congress enacted the alternative minimum tax (AMT) in 1969 to make wealthy taxpayers pay their fair share instead of using tax shelters and other means to reduce, or even eliminate, their federal tax liability.” (Kern, 1999). “The alternative minimum tax generally can be described as a flat tax rate which is imposed on a broader income base than the taxable income yardstick used for the regular corporate tax.” (Lind, supra note 11 at 15).  “The tax is designed to ensure that all taxpayers pay at least a minimum amount of taxes.” (Blacks Law Dictionary, 1990). “Without the alternative minimum tax, some of these taxpayers might be able to escape income taxation entirely. In essence, the AMT functions as a recapture mechanism, reclaiming some of the tax breaks primarily available to high-income taxpayers, and represents an attempt to maintain tax equity.” (Commerce Clearing House, 1999).

The AMT is paid in addition to any other income tax imposed and calculated as the excess of the tentative minimum tax for the taxable year over the regular tax for the taxable year. The definition for tentative minimum tax, though, depends on the status of the taxpayer, whether noncorporate or corporate. The tentative minimum tax for the noncorporate taxpayer is the sum of 26% of so much of the taxable excess as does not exceed $175,000 plus 28% of so much of the taxable excess as exceeds $175,000. The Internal Revenue Code also provides for tax exemption status, evidencing the congressional intent of taxing the high-income taxpayers. If the taxpayer’s taxable income does not exceed $45,000 for taxpayers filing a joint return, $33,750 for the individual taxpayer, or $22,500 for the married taxpayer filing separately, the taxpayer is exempt from alternative minimum tax treatment. This means that, depending on the individual taxpayer, there could be an exemption from AMT for the lower income brackets. After the $33,750 exemption, the next $175,000 will be taxed at a rate of 26%. Taxable income exceeding this will be taxed at 28%. At the corporate level, the first $40,000 of taxable income is exempt from AMT treatment.

As previously discussed, the PSC will have little or no taxable income as a result of “zeroing-out.” Therefore, no discussion of corporate AMT is necessary.

When analyzing the application of AMT to the noncorporate taxpayer, the focus of the discussion turns to the medical and miscellaneous itemized deductions. For Regular Income Tax (“RIT”) purposes, medical expenses are deductible when they exceed 7.5% of adjusted gross income (“AGI“). For AMT purposes, medical expenses are deductible only when they exceed 10% of AGI. With regard to miscellaneous deductions, the difference between RIT and AMT is even more conspicuous. For RIT purposes, miscellaneous itemized deductions (specifically unreimbursed employee business expenses) are deductible to the extent they exceed 2% of AGI. Under AMT, however, miscellaneous itemized deductions are not allowed. This is significant since an employee working in a noncorporate structure will be considered an employee for whom she provides services.

Therefore, any business expenses she incurs will be considered unreimbursed employee business expenses, shown as miscellaneous itemized deductions subject to the 2% of AGI limitation and rendered non-deductible for AMT purposes. Under the PSC, these business expenses escape both the RIT limitation and the AMT exclusion.

* For specific inquiries regarding a business legal matter that you may have, you are welcome to visit our Tax Attorney in Los Angeles.

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