What is Considered Domestic Violence

What is Considered Domestic Violence?

What is considered domestic violence? Most people have some kind of idea what’s involved, but it’s actually a broader topic than most expect. 

Here are the different types of domestic violence, along with a short explanation of each. 

Types of Domestic Violence

Physical Abuse -This is probably what most people think of. It’s any physically aggressive behavior, threat of physical harm, indirectly harming someone physically or withholding physical needs from someone. Threats, punches, denying food or sleep, and holding people hostage all come under this type of abuse. 

Emotional Abuse – This is any kind of behavior that exploits another person’s vulnerability, security or character. One example is insulting or criticizing someone to lower their confidence and self-esteem. Regularly ignoring or neglecting the victim’s needs also falls here. Telling someone they’re mentally unstable or incompetent is emotional abuse. 

Control – This is when one person maintains dominance over the victim. They control the victim’s behavior and believe it’s perfectly justified. One example is not giving the victim freedom with the types of clothes or hairstyle they wear. They may invade the victim’s privacy by never giving them time alone. Sometimes children are used to help control the victim parent by using them as spies or threatening to harm the child. 

Sexual Abuse – This is forcing sexual behavior on someone or using sexual behavior in an exploitative fashion. Sometimes it can be using force or manipulation to make the victim partake in sexual activities with other people or do things they don’t want to. In addition to these, it could be engaging in sexual activity with someone who can’t consent, for example if they’ve used drugs or are asleep. 

Isolation – Similar to control, this keeps the victim from seeing people they want to see. By keeping them socially isolated, the victim doesn’t get to see that the rest of the world wouldn’t agree with the types of abuse the victim is suffering. The victim is often told things to make this behavior sound okay by saying things like “if you really loved me, you’d want to spend time with me instead of your family or friends.”

Verbal Abuse – Somewhat self-explanatory, this includes any language used to threaten, embarrass or unfairly criticize the victim. Maybe the victim is being called names, or are constantly told they are undesirable or ugly. This could also include constantly be yelled at, or never talked to. Threats to hurt or kill the victim or their loved ones is also considered verbal abuse. 

How do I Know if This is Domestic Violence?

People involved in domestic violence situations don’t always know it. They may realize they’re being abused, but don’t consider reporting it to the proper authorities. 

If you know someone who seems like they’re being abused (including yourself), the best thing you can do is talk to someone who understands the subject. You never know until you ask, and it’s important to resolve these situations as early as possible. The longer it goes on, the more harm will be done to the victim. 

We’re here for you, click here to contact Von Esch Law today. 

The Most Important Parts of a Business Plan

The Most Important Parts of a Business Plan

After working with a lot of clients over the years, we’ve determined the most important parts of a business plan. Even though it’s important the whole thing is done well, here are the areas we recommend spending a little extra time on. 

Executive Summary

This is commonly accepted as the most important part of a business plan. If you don’t have a good executive summary, you won’t draw the reader in. They won’t won’t be interested in reading the rest of the document, so you would’ve wasted a lot of time and effort drafting it. 

Your executive summary should include a few key things:

  • Purpose of the plan
  • Business name
  • Location
  • The services or products you offer

The balance here is having a short summary that also communicates what you need to. Get them excited about the opportunity they’re learning about. 

Company Description

This part of the business plan is where you can dive a bit deeper into your company. This helps the reader understand the business as a whole.

A few key elements here include:

Legal Entity – How is your business legally structured? Is it a sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, S Corp or C Corp? 

Brief History – The reader doesn’t need to know every single thing your business has done over the last few months. But when was it started? What need was it created to fill?

Stakeholders – A stakeholder is anyone involved in the company. Suppliers, customers, employees, owners – they’re all considered stakeholders.

High-Level Goals – How big is the company going to grow over the next few years? How are you going to achieve that goal? 

Marketing Plan – You’ll get in more detail with this later. But what’s your overall marketing plan? How will you get new leads and reach new potential customers?

Again, this is all at a high level. You’re still warming up the reader and giving them an understanding of what you’re trying to do. 

Products and Services

This section may sound simplistic, but there’s more to it than you might expect. Yes, the point of this section is to explain what products and services you sell. But you also need to explain why they fill a need. 

For example, let’s say you offer a lawn mowing service. Why does your area need another one? How is your company different/better than the others? You need to be specific here. If you just say something generic like “we have the best people” or “we do the best job,” that’s not enough. 

The best way to do this is to get very specific. So instead of having a lawn mowing service that does anything and everything, maybe you just maintain the yards around office buildings. Or instead of doing landscaping for any residential home, you only do it for a certain high-end neighborhood. 

Other things to include in this section are your costs, suppliers, and prices. You need to prove that you’re able to actually make a decent profit. 

Financial Projections

Everything leads up to this section. This can make or break your business plan, as it needs to be appealing to investors. 

Don’t be unrealistic, but don’t be too conservative either. It takes time to get a business off the ground – investors understand that. But you still need to have something exciting enough that they’ll consider funding you. 

Need help with your business plan? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

Child Custody

Child Custody 101 – The Different Types of Custody

This Child Custody 101 article was crafted for one thing – to help simplify a complex subject. By the time you’re done reading this article, you’ll have a better understanding of the terminology often used when referring to the subject. 

Legal Custody vs. Physical Custody

This is a big one, so let’s start with it. At a high level, there are two types of custody – legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody refers to the parent’s responsibility to make decisions regarding the child’s health, education and overall well-being. Physical custody is just like it sounds – it refers to who lives with the child. 

Within those two buckets are several types of custody. Here are the most common.

Sole Custody of a Child

This parent is solely responsible for the child. This means exclusive physical and legal custody. The parent without custody has limited access to the child. This is often called visitation. 

Note that visitation doesn’t mean the parent can only see the child on rare occasions. It just means they don’t have the right to make decisions regarding where the child lives or things like education or the primary physician. 

Joint Custody of a Child

Joint custody means both parents have rights and responsibilities to care for the child. The first thing that may come to mind is a 50/50 split. In reality that’s difficult for everyone, so usually the responsibilities and time spent with the child lean more towards one parent than the other. Ideally, the time would be split as evenly as possible, and both parents would participate in major decisions affecting the child. 

Click here to read more about child custody laws during the holiday season.

Alternating Custody

This is where the parents alternate taking care of the child. For example, it may be that the mother keeps the children for 5 days a week, and the father keeps them for the weekend. Or maybe they stay with one parent for 3 days, then go back to the other parent’s home for another 3 days. Every family has a different arrangement that works for them. What’s important is that it works for everyone and both parents are still involved in the child’s life. 

More Types of Custody

Most situations end up in one of the situations listed above. Here are a few others that sometimes occur. 

Bird’s Nest – This is where a child lives in the same home all the time and the parents move in and out. The benefit is more consistency for the child but can be hard on the parents. 

Serial – This is where a child lives with one parent for a certain period of time (Ex: until they’re a teenager) and then they move in with the other parent for a certain time increment. 

Third-party – If the courts determine the parents are unfit to care for the kids, they can grant custody to another family member such as an aunt, uncle, grandparent or older sibling. 

Split – This is usually seen as a last resort, as it is hard on the entire family. Split custody is where one parent takes some children, and the other parent takes the others. This is difficult because children benefit from being with their siblings. Even if their parents have joint or alternating custody and the children are constantly moving from one parent’s home to the other, at least they always have each other. Split custody removes that and makes things complex. 

Do you have a question about the different types of custody? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

How to Start a Business in California

How to Start a Business in California

Want to start a business in California? The good news is it’s not as complicated as you might think. People do it every single day. As long as you go through these steps, you’ll be set up and ready to go in no time. 

Here are the basic steps to complete:

Step 1: Pick a Legal Structure

The first decision you need to make is how you want your company to be legally structured. Here are the four main structures you’ll see for small businesses:

  • Sole proprietorship
  • Partnership
  • Limited Liability Corporation (LLC)
  • Corporation

Each structure has its pros and cons, but we highly recommend making either an LLC or a corporation. The biggest advantage they have is security. Your personal assets are protected from loss in case of a lawsuit against the company. If you have a partnership or sole proprietorship, a lawsuit against the business can also come after your own personal assets.

Step 2: Pick a Name

The most important thing here is to make sure you don’t pick a name that’s already been taken – especially by a company in your industry. You can do a business name search for what you’re thinking and see if anything pops up. If not, you’re probably in the clear. If something does come up, dig a little more to see if they might be a competitor or if they are in a very different industry. 

Once you pick your name, make sure you buy the appropriate Internet domain address to go along with your growing business. 

Step 3: Create Your Business Identity and Get Permits

Now that you know your name and business structure, it’s time to register your business. If you’re a partnership or sole proprietor, you don’t need to register your business. If you go the LLC or corporation route, you’ll need to submit an Article of Organization or Article of Incorporation respectively. 

Once you’ve done that, it’s time to go more local. Register your business with your local city and county so they have a record. If your industry requires and permits or licenses to do the work, get those ASAP before you start getting too many questions about it. 

Step 4: Pick Your Location

Now it’s time to start narrowing in on your business location. Will you have a standalone building? Use a vacant space in a strip mall? Or just do everything online?

There’s no right or wrong answer. The truth is you never know if a location will do well or not. That doesn’t mean you can’t research though. In fact, it should make you want to do more research to better understand the market. 

Step 5: Set up for Taxes

Taxes are handled a little differently for each of the business structures. We recommend going through this step with an accountant who is used to working with small businesses. They’ll make sure it’s done right and you aren’t setting yourself up to lose (too much!) money. 

These are the first steps to starting a business in California. Not too bad, right? The good news is it’s relatively simple. The bad news is that it takes a lot of time and effort. We are here to help. 

Have any questions about starting a business in California? Contact us today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

California Laws for Child Custody During the Holiday Season

The holidays are approaching us! When it comes to most families, the common fall and winter holidays are a great time to rest and spend time with your relatives. This can be very hard for moms and dads who have been through a divorce.

Are you planning on divorcing your husband or wife? It is imperative that you put all of your energy and time into creating a custody schedule that will be best for your children. Children need a thought out custody arrangement that also incorporates holiday plans, so that they know what to expect. 

How does a timeshare custody arrangement have an effect on the holidays?

What we mean by time custody is the time that is spent with the mom or dad. To say it an additional way, it reflects the time of physical custody with the child. You need to know the percentage of custody each parent will have. This could have an effect on how often you are allowed to see your kid.

But did you know that holidays are not exempt from this? If you would like to spend fall or winter holidays with your children, you might need to give up time spent with them during other times  throughout the year. Unless, the opposing makes an agreement with you, the time with your children cannot go above the timeshare percentage.

What about the holidays and time spent with your child?

You, as a mom or dad, are obligated to make a child custody arrangement prior to the divorcing finalization. You too need to agree on certain details about the mom and dad spending time with the children. Find an agreement with one another takes a ton of sacrifice and time. You will need to work with each other to find the best outcome for your children when it comes to holidays as well. 

Is there an age requirement for custody to be in effect for holidays?

Moms and dads to think about sharing a holiday with their kids altogether. It may be best to get along with your ex-husband or wife and spend the holidays together with your kids, rather than giving up the special day. This will most likely benefit your kids the most. 

Click here to learn a father’s custody rights!

What are some instances of custody agreement during the holidays?

You can make a custody agreement and split up holidays between each other in many ways. Below are some instances of custody agreements that have been used by moms and dads.

Switching the Holidays: Moms and dads can make an agreement to have their kids on different holidays. The holiday rotation will happen each year. For example, dad gets custody of the kids for Thanksgiving on every odd year. Mom gets kids on Thanksgiving for even year.

Splitting Up Christmas and Christmas Eve: These two days in December are very special for most families. Moms and dads will have an agreement to divide time with the children between Christmas and Christmas Eve. For instance, mom gets time with the kids on Christmas and dad gets time with the kids on Christmas Eve. 

Spring Break and Christmas Break: If moms and dads live across the country from each other, they need to make a custody agreement that meets both of the parents wants when it comes to spending time with the kids. Travelling could be expensive and take up a lot of time. Children could get anxiety and sadness when they are being sent from parent to parent. 

Do you have a question about holiday custody? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

 

Here Are the Laws in California for Time Off During the Holidays

Thanksgiving will be here before we know it and it is important that we get the time we need with our family. This would be a great time to look over what your boss is obligated to as far as being accommodating to requests for vacation time during the holiday season. You should also look at the pay responsibilities if you do end up working on a holiday. Here are some things to think about when looking forward into the holidays.

1. Business owners in California are not mandated to let their employees get vacation time during the holiday season. There are no laws that state that employers need to provide time off. When employees go to work on Saturdays, Sundays, and the holiday season, they should be treated the same as regular business hours. Business owners don’t need to provide paid holidays and their business is able to close out on any holiday. 

2. Employers in California are not required by law to pay their employees vacation time on a holiday. They are also not mandated to pay additional money to employees who labor on a holiday. Business owners are also not required to pay their workers additional or holiday money for their labor that is worked on a holiday. It is the employer’s choice to pay their employees the extra money for the labor that is needed on a holiday. It needs to be in the company policy for this to take effect.

3. Business owners need to accommodate their employees who are not able to perform labor on specific holidays because of their religion. Business owners should be accommodating to their workers in regards to religion. The evaluation of this usually comes in a case by case basis and is based on the type of company and the request made by the worker. If the business owner’s way of doing things needs workers to be at work during a holiday, such as a movie theater, this needs to be written in the employee handbook. 

Click here to learn everything you need to know about disrimination in the workplace!

4. When the business owner pays for time off on a holiday, they don’t need to allow his or her employees to collect time off for the holiday. When or if the worker quits his or her job prior to the holidays, the business owner does not need to pay him or her for the time taken off. The business owner’s rules in regards to compensation needs to be stated in the handbook that the holiday pay benefit doesn’t become collected and that they need to be still employed with the business to receive it.

Do you have a question about holiday pay? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

Father’s Custody Rights in California

In regards to kids and their parents, parents have legal rights to maintain the relationship with them. These California laws see that both the mom and dad have the same chance at being close with their kids. Also, California laws have been implemented so that the California courts or other government representatives will not be allowed to interject in the relationship between a kid and parent unless highly needed for the protection their kid. In regards to the father’s custody rights or child custody cases in California, California family law courts utilize the highest quality interests of the minor as the standard.

The Result of a Dad in a Kid’s Life

Often times, the mom is seen as the first provider and highest on the totem pole in a kid’s life. Studies have recently found that a dad or father figure also has a great effect on emotional developments and on a kid’s childhood. Many dads are known as the caring one and effective at disciplining the child. The involvement of the dad in a kid’s life makes a huge impact on how this child develops social skills, language skills and also affects cognitive development. Fathers who are supportive and loving have been shown to have a positive effect on a kid’s life.

Establishing Paternity in the State of California

When it comes to establishing a father’s paternity, it means either a child’s parents or the government has determined that a specific male individual is the kid’s father. In some cases, California law assumes the identity of the child’s dad, such as:

-When a kid is born into the wedlock and the mom’s husband is considered the kid’s dad.

-When a kid is born and a male has been in the home with the kid’s mom and acts as family, has committed to the kid, and is seen as the kid’s dad even if they aren’t related biologically.

-The kid’s fatherly needs to be known when these two circumstances are not currently happening in the home.

Click here to learn whether children have a say in child custody arrangements!

Parents should sign a voluntary declaration of paternity to make the child’s paternity known. The medical provider needs to provide the mom and the alleged dad the correct information when it comes to time sign this voluntary declaration form when a mom who is not married delivers the baby in a medical setting. During the signing of this form, both the mom and dad need to state that they are the parents to the kid. The dad’s name is legally written and signed on the birth certificate. The dad then is responsible to this kid when this is finished.

The kid may or may not be acknowledged as a party in this paternity action case if he or she is below the the age of twelve. But he or she will be considered a party in this case, if they are above the age of twelve. The court may assign a representative for the kid in these two circumstances. This person appears in court on the kid’s and represents what will most likely be in the kid’s best interests.

Do you have a question about child custody laws? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

Everything You Need to Know About Racial Discrimination in the Workplace

Did you know that it’s illegal in the state of California for an employer to have discrimination toward an individual because of their ethnic background? People that are harassed or discriminated against an employee based on race could make a claim in opposition to his or her boss for the damages done.

1. Could a California employer decline to bring on an individual because of his or her ethnicity?

No, a business owner in California can’t decline to bring on an individual due to his or her ethnic background. Employment discrimination because of an individual’s race is a It is illegal in the state of California to discriminate in workplace because of an individual’s ethnicity.

It is not legal for a the business owner with five or more workers to single out a person based on ethnicity as seen under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act .

2. How can you discriminate against ethnic background?

Race discrimination usually occurs when you behave towards a person in a different manner than other due to the place she or she was born in, how he or she looks, or their race. Color, race and ethnicity could mean various things to different people. There is oftentimes a ton of overlap. But it is illegal in California to discriminate based on color, race or ethnicity.

Racial discrimination could also be incorporated with national origin discrimination. This happens when the employer treats a worker or job candidate badly because he or she comes from a certain nation or comes off as a certain ethnicity.

Ethnic background can be linked to cultural aspects based on where he or she grew up or where his or her relatives came from. This is the same as the definition of national origin under California law. National origin refers to a person’s place of birth or original heritage. The laws against race discrimination are not only limited to employers. These laws also apply to labor organizations and unions. These are prohibited from expelling, excluding or restricting membership to an individual based on color or race.

Assumed Ethnic Background

Race discrimination in the workplace is not legal even if the individual has made an error about the victim’s ethnicity. The California workplace laws against race discrimination based also applies to the ethnic background that is assumed. If the business owner happens to have made an error about the applicant’s race or color, it’s not a defense to discrimination against race.

An instance would be if an manager conducting an interview might choose not to hire the candidate due to not trusting Chinese people. The candidate was really a United States citizen, grew up in America to parents from South Korea.

If the applicant files a complaint against the employer for race discrimination, the fact that the employer has made an error about the applicant’s race is not a defense. The employer might still be in violation of workplace discrimination laws for any discrimination based on race.

Click here to learn why you need a lawyer to review your contract!

3. Can you be discriminated against by someone from the same race?

An employer could discriminate against someone from the same race. California’s employment discrimination laws are not based on the employer’s race but make any race discrimination not lawful.

Do you have a question about race discrimination in the workplace? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

 

Do Children Have Rights in California Child Custody Cases?

Nobody gets married thinking it will end in divorce. That unfortunately usually becomes the result. A break up in marriage is a rough time for everyone who is part of the family, specifically the kids. Both parents contribute to the benefits of their kid. When the mom or dad might be the top person to care for the kid, the other parent might be giving to the child monetarily. Both of these responsibilities are important for supporting a flourishing child. Usually assistance from a great family lawyer is just as essential to your life as a parent. You should not experience this break up by yourself. Obtaining a good lawyer to represent you is crucial. The California court system will have a great understanding of your point of view and how you care for your child when your attorney manifests your case. You should steer clear of expensive errors by  letting our experienced attorneys to secure your custody rights and represent you when it comes to the needs of your children.

When do California courts listen to what kids need in these cases? A kid may want to live with one parent over the other after the split. However, is it right to include the kids in the custody disputes in court? Specifically for kids, divorce cases can be extremely traumatizing. Is it okay for a kid to witness the pain and animosity of his or her parents during the trials? We think “occasionally.”

What the child has a say in

There are many laws in California that secure the rights for the kids. Usually the courts in California want both parents to contribute financially while having joint custody. The mother, father, and the court are responsible for making decisions on the best interest of the kids and ensuring that they have a healthy environment in the custody arrangements.

Kids have a great love for their mother and father. They would like both parents to be proud of them. However, it can become hard when kids are stuck in the middle of a nasty divorce. The mother and father usually disagree on who gets the child when, child support and visitation. All of these arrangements are already confusing for kids, so it may be best to not make children choose sides and cause a stressful situation. The laws in our state are cautious in getting what they need from the kid to make a decision.

How old does a child need to be to make decisions?

Even though there aren’t laws that say a certain age a child needs to be to make custody decisions, most courts in California think that the age of thirteen or fourteen is old enough to have a say as to why they prefer to live with the mom or dad. The court will consider that the adolescent age of the child is usually difficult and that he or she has a good chance of behaving badly to cope with the split.

Click here to learn who keeps the car in a divorce!

What if the young child wants to live with one parent over the other?

In a case where a child is young, the courts need to intervene. Children usually function on emotion. They might say they want to live with one parent instead of the other for reasons that have everything to do with the parents and not a lot to do with the child. 

Do you have a question about child custody? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration

 

Why You Need a Lawyer to Prepare and Review Your Contract

Drafting a Legally Binding Agreement
A contract or legally binding could be verbal or on paper, but the most significant contracts are those that are signed by parties of two or more. Legally binding agreements are the core of your business and may be basic or sophisticated. Some instances of contracts include employment contracts, sales agreements, real estate purchase contracts, and confidentiality agreements.

The preparation of a legally binding agreement the action of writing out the conditions and terms to outline what both parties are obligated to do, in order to completely have an understanding of the agreement. Contracts can be drafted through any individual, but a lawyer is usually necessary to make a legally binding agreement that holds up and protects the parties.

How are the Contracts Prepared?
Legally binding agreements can be in various forms. The most common legally binding agreement is the standard form contract, otherwise known as the standardized agreement and is drafted by an individual of one of the parties. The alternative party can hardly argue the terms that are considered positive for them. Some examples of adhesion contracts tickets events, insurance policies, and apartment and housing leases.

What is a Contract Review?
An individual signing the contract will most likely cautiously review the contract or will have his or her attorney look over the contract. A contract review will make sure that you will have a full understanding of what you’re signing.

This is an important procedure to ensure that there will be rare contract disputes in the years to come. The initial piece of evidence that the court search for is the verbiage of the contract itself during a dispute. Both of the contract parties can make reference to the contract and point out what is expected of both parties if an issue were to occur.

A nicely written and well-understood legally binding agreement can lower the confusion between the two signers. Legal problems could happen if the agreement is not written clearly. For this reason, we suggest that you look through the agreement in and our or have one of our experienced attorney perform a complete evaluation of any contract prior to signing it.

Since legally binding agreements can be long and have become highly complicated, many individuals usually skim and skip through the content and do not really have the knowledge of what he or she are agreeing to. Having a qualified business lawyer evaluate your agreement or contract draft might save you from expensive legal woes in the future.

Click here to learn sexual harassment laws in California!

Should You Hire a Lawyer to Help with Writing the Contract and Reviewing It?

You need to prepare and understand your contract. This can be a complicated journey. It might be the best decision to speak to our experienced business lawyers.

Our experienced business attorneys will help you from beginning to end through the contract writing and reviewing process and safeguard you against anything that can go wrong. We will also help avoid other problems with the law that come up from an incorrectly drafted contract and support you in court, if needed.

Do you have a question about contract preparation and review? Click here to contact Von Esch Law today!

Courtesy of Cuselleration