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Looking out for Employees After a Business Acquisition

Today, we’re continuing our conversation with Christina Hynes Mesco from The Prinz Law Firm, and we are looking at the employee side of a business acquisition. You may go from being an employer of 10-50 people to become an employee among 10,000 others. What are your rights now and what should you look out for regarding executive compensation?

The Prinz Law Firm is located in Chicago, Illinois, and Christina is a business and employment law attorney.

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Business Acquisition – Key Points

  • Hans watched a business owner gradually lose control over a company that he built.
  • Consider having an agreement that makes some portion of your interest in the company “non-dilutable.”
  • It might be expensive to engage an attorney to safeguard your interests, but an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
  • People in executive positions of an organization often assume they will be treated right after a business acquisition, but that doesn’t always happen.
  • Be proactive and get some terms in writing to ensure you enjoy continuity and predictability in your employment.
  • Why you should be part of the process that determines achievable performance targets.
  • Severance terms should be clear from the outset. Take the opportunity to negotiate for yourself if your employer doesn’t bring it up.
  • Read the fine print to assess what constitutes “cause” for severance.
  • Decide which factors result in constructive termination.
  • Tips to help find an attorney who specializes in the employment space.

We hope you enjoy this exciting topic.

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What You Need to Know about Employees’ Rights

You own a business, and you’ve had to hire people. Are you hiring them as employees or subcontractors, and do you have an employee handbook? Here is what you need to know about employees’ rights.

Christina Hynes Mesco from The Prinz Law Firm helps us look at what employers need to know about employees’ rights. Christina is a business and employment law attorney who advises small and medium-sized entities on a range of issues business owners might run into. Whether just starting or continuing their business practice, employment-related questions come up, and knowledge in employment-related litigation is key.

Christina is licensed to practice in Illinois but she gives general advice to clients all over the US. The Prinz Law Firm is located in Chicago, Illinois.

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Employees’ Rights – Key points

  • It is not uncommon for a business owner to overlook the area of employees, yet it is one that is rife with misunderstanding and litigation.
  • Employee contracts and formalizing employment relationships are vital to employees’ rights as they lay out rights and responsibilities of all parties.
  • You must decide whether you need to hire an employee or an independent contractor.
  • We offer tips to help in distinguish between employees and independent contractors.
  • Non-disclosure or confidentiality agreements are used to protect your information.
  • Restrictive covenants are usually a part of an employment contract.
  • It is sometimes helpful to have different terms distributed into separate documents.
  • Employers need to establish whether an individually negotiated agreement is required, which is primarily for key employees.
  • When an employee is terminated, a severance agreement is used to obtain a “release of claims” that complies with federal and state statutes.
  • Employment litigation can be very contentious and bitter.
  • In cases of mergers and acquisitions, employees will be required to sign new employment agreements.
  • A retention agreement can calm possible concerns of top employees and prevent disruption to business operations, as well as an offering monetary incentives,

Tune in to learn about employees’ rights.

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Value Pricing

What is value pricing? Have you timed every task in your business? Some businesses no longer bill by the hour and instead package and price their various service offerings.

On this episode, Jason Lawhorn of Lawhorn CPA Group Inc explains value pricing and how his business has implemented it.

Founded in 1979, Lawhorn CPA Group leverages on technology and is today associated with a variety of services and brands, including auditing, marketing, and processing of credit cards. They have multiple locations: Knoxville, Tennessee; Jefferson City, Tennessee; Jackson, Wyoming; and the newest addition is Augusta, Georgia.

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Value Pricing – Key points

  • Pricing professional services.
  • Shifting away from hourly rates removes the risk from clients.
  • If the company is efficient and effective, it will make money regardless of the pricing system.
  • Value pricing is the point where the firm’s expectation of value and the client’s perception of value meet.
  • Clients are free to pick and choose the level of service they need.
  • Pricing involves an end to end system, from CRM to scheduling workflow and business analytics.
  • When somebody has 8 hours to fill, they’re going to fill it, regardless of whether or not they work all those hours.
  • Technology drives the rationale for value pricing.
  • For anyone running a service-based business, value pricing can give a competitive edge.
  • Build your team. There’s no “I” in “team,” and you need a team.

If you are in the professional service realm, this episode presents a new approach to billing for services. Enjoy.

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How Cloud Accounting Has Affected Your Bookkeeping

Do you remember having to download your books to a flash drive to take to your accountant? Those days are long gone, and we now have cloud accounting. On this show, Jason Lawhorn of Lawhorn CPA Group joins us to talk about how cloud accounting affects accountants, and CPAs.

Founded by Jeff Lawhorn in 1979, Lawhorn CPA Group started as a family business offering accounting services and developed over the years into more than the traditional accounting firm. The group leverages on technology and is today associated with a variety of services and brands, including auditing, marketing, and processing of credit cards.

Lawhorn CPA Group has multiple locations:  Knoxville, Tennessee; Jefferson City, Tennessee; Jackson, Wyoming; and the newest addition is Augusta, Georgia. Jason joined the business in 1992 and never looked back.  He has a master’s degree in Accounting Information Systems.

Click here to find more information on our website.

Cloud Accounting – Key Points

  • Lawhorn CPA’s early adoption of the virtual office cloud platform.
  • More and more accounting firms are embracing technology and the cloud.
  • Using Microsoft Azure to access your office from any location.
  • There’s an opportunity to adopt efficient and effective ways of working.
  • Recalling how books used to be done with old-school technology.
  • Business intelligence and analytics for small business.
  • Xero enables real-time processing of business transactions.
  • Accountants and other professionals can make decisions must faster for better results.
  • QuickBooks Online has some limitations.
  • Partner eco-systems can be used to develop custom solutions for your business.
  • Outsourcing of back-office accounting can be varied to suit a client’s preferred level of integration and involvement.
  • Having a cloud-based accounting program does not mean that you will be able to do your accounting without professional support.
  • Businesses need to continually track key performance metrics and industry trends, to identify areas for improvement.
  • Accountants can provide critical insights by relating specific numbers in the income statement to those in the balance sheet.

Listen in and enjoy.

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Workers Compensation Insurance

Whether you have zero employees or thousands of them, you need workers compensation insurance or workers comp as it’s known. On today’s show, Travis Gensler of Beacon Point gives insights on this topic and talks about how to control your costs and avoid letting your payroll company dictate the type of insurance you need.

Since his college days, Travis has always been an entrepreneur. He started with a lawn care business, ventured into property for a while, and then owned a digital advertising franchise before settling into the insurance world. Beacon Point is an insurance firm located in Independence, Missouri, just outside of Kansas City.

Click here to find more information on our website.

Workers Compensation Insurance – Key Points

  • What exactly is workers compensation insurance?
  • Each state has its own rules regarding workers comp.
  • Payroll companies might not be the best place to look for advice, pricing, or assistance.
  • Contracts you enter into with other parties may demand that you have workers comp on yourself.
  • Health insurance policies sometimes exclude work-related injuries.
  • The industry you work in, job descriptions and payroll information will determine the policy premium.
  • Ideally, the insurance company will proactively outline the steps to take should an incident arise.
  • Many insurers provide coverage on a national basis, but four states have their own state pool.
  • Working with an agent or broker is often the best way to find the most appropriate insurer.
  • Get more value by working with an organization that has gone through additional workers comp training.

You are sure to get nuggets of information to help protect your purpose.

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Financial Statements: Numbers every Business Owner should know

Knowing what numbers to look at i your financial statements could save you thousands of dollars, that’s why we’ll spend some time today deliberating numbers.

We are joined by Richard Lindsey, CPA, of Lindsey & Waldo, LLC. Richard worked in a family business for 15 years before getting a Master of Accounting degree. He’s been a CPA for about 26 years, and his focus is primarily on individuals, small businesses, and their owners – helping them with their financial statements, payroll, tax returns, and tax planning. Lindsey & Waldo, LLC is located in Mobile, Alabama.

Click here to find more information on our website.

Financial Statements – Key Points

  • Where should you focus your attention?
  • A business owner’s industry will influence the figures that are essential.
  • Not all critical numbers appear in financial statements.
  • Some practical examples of figures that are useful in analyzing a restaurant business.
  • Do you know the significant numbers associated with your expenses?
  • Keep a hawk-eye on variable costs.
  • Depending on the industry, some numbers that management should be looking at may seem insignificant but could add up to a whole lot.
  • Management accounts tend to be more voluminous than the set of financial statements you would share with your bank.
  • Business owners could save money by paying themselves less in wages!
  • Profit distribution vs. salary income for S Corps.
  • The best CPA to work with is one who is proactive with suggestions or solutions for your business.
  • Track everything and document everything.

Soak this information in and enjoy.

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Business Sales Tax on Intangible Goods

Are you an LLC with clients outside the state you reside in? If yes, you may have to pay sales tax in every state you conduct business.

In a previous episode, we talked about sales tax on tangible goods and today we transition into what the law says for businesses that don’t sell physical goods.

We continue our conversation with Derrick Winke of Wink Tax Services, a firm located in Troy, just outside of Detroit, Michigan. In his line of work, Derrick focuses primarily on tax returns for individuals and small businesses.

Click here to find more information on our website.

Business Sales Tax – Key Points

  • Not all states apply sales tax to digital products and services.
  • Whether or not you collect sales tax on intangible goods is not always affected by where you choose to operate from.
  • Understanding the legal concept of Nexus when it comes to doing business.
  • There is always the possibility that the State will eventually go after third-party record-keepers, to require them to report information.
  • If you are an LLC outside of California and have clients in California, you may be required to pay taxes on the profits you make on those clients.
  • In recent years, there has been a push by the IRS requiring that 1099s be issued to more businesses.
  • The requirement for form 1099 is different for corporations, LLCs, and LLPs.
  • Cutting corners today could cost you a fortune in future.
  • Some useful questions to ask your CPA or Bookkeeper before you hire them.
  • Most businesses fail because of bad record-keeping.

Invest in the next 15 minutes to find out more

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Business Contracts – If It’s Not in Writing, It Never Happened

Often in business, people discuss and agree on terms of engagement. Today’s conversation is about what to consider with business contracts and putting things in writing.

On this show, we have Josh Clayton from the law offices of Josh Clayton, located in Shreveport, Louisiana. He began his career with law firms in Baton Rouge and Hammond, then worked briefly at an oil and gas outfit in Shreveport before going into private practice in 2008.

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Contracts – Key Points

  • When does one need to invest in documenting a legal contract?
  • Why lawyers say that phone calls never happened.
  • Contracts don’t need to sound like a lawyer wrote them.
  • When entering into a relationship for any service, at the very minimum, put your expectations in writing and get a confirmation.
  • Good contracts make good business partners.
  • Lawyers can use past email correspondence to come up with a proper contract.
  • An attorney will ask the tough questions that you might have overlooked in normal business dealings.
  • No need for reservations; contracts are modifiable.
  • Lawyers are encouraged to write contracts in simple English.
  • When someone hands you a contract, don’t be too eager to sign on the dotted line without getting a legal opinion.
  • People sometimes underestimate the value of building a trusted advisor network.
  • A tip on how to find the best lawyer when you have a specific need.

Invest the next 20 minutes in finding out more.

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Professional Liability Insurance

In a previous episode, we talked about general liability and cyber insurance with Ryan Andrew from The Andrew Agency. Today we’re finishing up our time with him to discuss professional liability insurance. If you’re a baby boomer, this episode is especially relevant.

The Andrew Agency is located in Richmond, Virginia, offering professional insurance services in Virginia, Maryland, and D.C.

Click here to find more information on our website.

Professional Liability Insurance – Key points

  • General liability vs. professional liability.
  • If your business is about providing advice to others, you need professional liability insurance.
  • Lawsuits cost you, regardless if you win the case or not.
  • A look at examples where professional liability has been claimed.
  • “Per occurrence policies” vs. “Claims made policies.”
  • What is tail coverage?
  • Details that an underwriter will consider when determining the cost of a premium.
  • Your insurance agent should be licensed to operate in your state.
  • There is a good reason why most agencies choose to operate in only a few states.
  • Make sure your agent knows what business you’re going to be doing, who you’ll be doing it for, and where you’re going to be doing it.
  • Depending on your business, the omission of certain coverage could result in hefty fines.
  • Starting a business is exciting but take time to ensure that you’re properly covered.
  • A tip on questions to ask your broker before you take out a policy.

Tune in to get valuable information for your business.

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Collecting Sales Tax – Does your business need to do it?

Not every business is super excited about collecting sales tax but if you sell online or are wondering about your obligations as a seller, this episode is a must-listen.

Derrick Winke from Wink Tax Services is with us once more, and he’ll be helping us get acquainted with the rules regarding sales tax. In his line of work, Derrick focuses primarily on tax returns for individuals and small businesses. Wink Tax Services, is located in Troy, just outside of Detroit, Michigan, and has clients on almost every continent as well as from most states.

Click here to find more information on our website.

Collecting sales Tax – Key Points

  • What the law says about collecting sales tax.
  • What happens if you manufacture products and then sell online.
  • Understanding how you are affected by your physical location and your client’s physical location.
  • Getting a sales tax license.
  • How often do you need to file your returns?
  • When your warehouse is not in the state where you operate from.
  • Are you liable to pay sales tax if you sell on Amazon?
  • The rules for startup companies.
  • If you manufacture a product overseas, what are the rules?
  • It is possible to save money by deducting certain items.
  • When you have a license, you don’t always have to pay sales tax on items that you purchase locally.
  • Some vendors will give you a wholesale account and sell to you without sales tax.
  • Good bookkeeping and record keeping are very important.

We’re sure you will get a lot out of this episode.

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