LawGram Volume 10, No. 1

Table of Contents

IMPERATIVE FOR OUR TIMES: BUSINESS SUCCESSION PLANNING

Convergence of key economic factors have created an environment in which is it important for business owners to address the issue of succession planning. Consideration should be given to transferring some of the ownership in the business to those family members who are active in the operation of the business and who are seen as the next generation of the leaders for the business. But this should only be done in the context of a complete succession plan which should be designed to strengthen the business and the family. This will help insure that the future leaders of the business have an incentive to remain with the business. By taking advantage of current valuations and tax rates, the family may be eligible for saving taxes while ensuring the future viability of the business.

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EMPLOYERS BEWARE: GOVERNMENT TO CRACK DOWN ON MISCLASSIFICATION OF WORKERS

The Government Accountability Office has called for an increased crackdown on misclassification of workers as independent contractors rather than employees. The Internal Revenue Service has conducted numerous audits of worker classification by employers but this will be the first quantitative study of the problem of worker misclassification since 1984. Given the anticipated step up in enforcement of existing laws and the more stringent legislation under consideration, it is critical that all businesses utilizing independent contractors carefully review whether workers are properly classified as independent contractors and, if they are not, take appropriate measures to rectify the misclassification.

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REGULATORS EASE UP ON LENDERS AND BORROWERS

Recently a consortium of regulators published a policy statement, ostensibly directed to bank examiners reviewing regulatory matters, that offered important guidance for both lenders and borrowers who are dealing with commercial real estate issues. The policy statement emphasizes that bank examiners are to take a balanced approach in assessing a financial institution’s approach to borrowers that are experiencing financial problems. Having obvious reference to the current state of the commercial real estate market, the bank examiners are directed not to unfavorably change the classification of a loan simply because the borrower is in a particular industry that it is the throes of a financial collapse.

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WELCOME KRISTEN HENGTGEN

Levin Ginsburg is pleased to announce that Kristen E. Hengtgen has joined the firm as an associate. Kristen has been clerking for Levin Ginsburg during her last year of law school and is practicing in the areas of commercial litigation, dispute resolution, foreclosure law and business law. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in political science and legal studies. Kristen attended law school at DePaul University graduating cum laude in 2009. While in law school Kristen was a member and Editor of “Articles, Notes and Comments” of the DePaul Law Review.

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