711 West Moreland Boulevard, #100A, Waukesha, WI 53188
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Bucher Law Group, LLC

Passing the family business to the next generation

Let's say it's time for you to retire. You've built up a successful business, and you want to pass it along to the next generation of your family. What problems do you foresee? What are some recommended solutions?

Two of your children have worked for the company, and you want them to continue. One hasn't and is not involved with the welfare of the company.

You want the business to survive, family harmony to be preserved and your children treated equally.

Experience has shown that having a company operated by employee-children and nonemployee-children is usually bad for both the children and the business. Tensions may arise over the amount paid to the nonemployee owner, the amount of salaries, benefits and perks paid to the employee-owners, the amount not distributed and kept in the bank account as retained earnings or a debate on how well the company is being managed. Even if the children trust each other and get along well, the introduction of brothers and sisters-in-law can stir up resentments and trouble.

Can you see where this is going?

Should I Take My Company to Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing promises to rapidly change how small businesses operate.

This is good news for owners. Equipment and software costs will plummet.

With cloud computing you won't need big modems and a suite of software for each employee's computer. Instead, you'll need just one application on a laptop and access to the Internet. That app will allow employees to log onto a web-based service that hosts all the programs they need. The computers running the cloud are in remote, secure locations, and they will run everything from e-mail to complex data analysis programs.

(You may already be using cloud computing. If you have an e-mail account with Hotmail, Gmail or Yahoo!, you log onto a web-based account remotely. The software and storage for your e-mail account don't exist on your computer. They are on the service provider's computer cloud.)

That's the good news about cloud computer.

The other side of the coin is that you will be asked to sign a contract with the service provider. Here's a word of advice: Before signing that agreement, have a lawyer review it.

Time for a Corporate Audit?

If you own or operate a business, you are probably due for a corporate audit. Surprises and hassles that cost time and money are lurking. Here are some examples:

1. Employment agreements. There are hundreds of lawsuits in Wisconsin between employers and employees over terminations and employment agreements. Here are a few problem areas:

a. New Restrictive Covenants. Can you ask a current employee to sign an employment agreement with new restrictive covenants? Yes, but you will have to provide some consideration, either in the form of extra money or some other perk.

b. Non-Competition Covenants. Is a non-competition clause legal?

The Importance of Securing Uninsured Motorist Insurance

What happens when you get into an accident with someone who does not have enough liability coverage to cover your medical expenses? Recently, the Wisconsin Bar released an article focused on the importance of securing an appropriate amount of uninsured motorist insurance for when this happens. "Underinsured motorist coverage protects individuals injured in a car accident if the other driver does not have enough coverage to pay for the damages." (Wisconsin Bar, 2014).

The article discusses the changes that have recently come to light regarding uninsured motorist insurance and what it means for drivers. It used to be that uninsured motorist insurance would cover the difference between the damages and what the underinsured motorist was able to pay. Now these rules have changed. Now, your underinsured motorist coverage limits must be higher than the other driver's liability limits in order to take advantage of your coverage benefits. Unfortunately, if liability limits and underinsured motorist coverage are the same amount, you will not receive a penny from your insurance.

Traumatic Head Injury - Shaken Baby Syndrome Case

This firm was retained by a day care provider who, unfortunately, was in the wrong place at the wrong time. A very young child under her care had stopped breathing and went into convulsions. The child was then rushed to the hospital. It was determined that the child sustained a traumatic head injury — previously commonly known as Shaken Baby Syndrome. Tragically, the child lost sight in one eye and may have other permanent consequences as a result of the injury to the child's brain.

Our client was arrested and charged with a very serious felony offense for allegedly causing injury to this child — first-degree reckless injury. Our client had absolutely no involvement in the injury to the child. She had provided care to children for well over a decade and had many other children in her care. Simply being charged with an offense of this kind was very traumatic and difficult to deal with, but also presented very severe consequences if our client was convicted.

This firm worked diligently in scouring through the voluminous medical reports and indicating there was an alternative explainable cause for the injury. After retaining two nationally known experts and presenting our information to the district attorney, the state determined that it could not meet its burden of proof and dismissed the charge against our client. As a result of the dismissal, our client was not facing a prison term of 40 years with a felony conviction and other serious consequences. Obviously, a conviction of this type would have permanently and seriously altered our client's life and that of her family. While this was a very emotionally long journey for our client — and an expensive, one — it resulted in a dismissal and the return of her fingerprints and photographs. My client's family life was literally turned upside down as a result of this tragic situation, but our client remained strong and determined. This firm remained strong at her side. Our client and her family are now moving forward with their lives.

Bucher Law Group, LLC , is vastly experienced in felony cases that include not only instances of traumatic brain cases, but many other serious felony charges. We have the experience and knowledge to assist if any serious allegation is made against you, your family members or friends.

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