Charlotte Business Law Attorneys
Business Services Including Legal Formation, Contracts, and Litigation
Owning your own business is the dream of many Americans. Whether you offer a product or service, running a business goes far beyond opening the doors or launching a website.
The need for legal guidance begins before you serve your first customer and continues as long as the company operates. At Jetton & Meredith, PLLC, we offer a full array of legal support, making us the go-to law firm in Charlotte for businesses of all sizes.
From business formation to succession planning and everything in between, our team of lawyers helps entrepreneurs and executives navigate the complex landscape of commercial enterprises.
Legal Guidance for Corporate Formation
If you want to start a new company or expand an existing business, our attorneys can recommend the appropriate legal formation. We help business owners understand the pros and cons of each type of legal entity. Your goals and the business structure are guiding factors in evaluating the options.
- Limited Liability Company (LLC): A limited liability company is common in today’s business landscape. This type of business involves one or more people. Single-member LLCs are typically chosen over sole proprietorships because they offer liability protection from creditors. An LLC must register with the North Carolina Secretary of State before conducting business.
- Sole Proprietorship: A sole proprietorship is operated by one person. This individual is personally liable for their business, legally and financially. The owner of this type of business does not have to file a separate business tax return. The downside is that their personal assets are at risk if the business fails. Sole proprietorships are usually not the best option if the owner wants to attract investors.
- Partnerships (General and Limited): This business entity usually involves two individuals who work together. Our attorneys can draft a legal agreement specifying the percentage of ownership, management rights, and other details. The business is shared equally in a general partnership, and each owner is liable for legal and financial obligations. One partner has majority control in a limited partnership and shoulders the liability.
- Corporations: Corporations are entities with rights separate from their owners. The corporation can own and sell property as well as stocks. The entity, not the owners and stockholders, is responsible for legal or financial claims against the company. Corporations require extensive recordkeeping and separate tax returns. C corporations, S corporations, and B corporations are examples of specific corporation types.
The legal formation chosen when a business first opens may not serve its best interests over time. Our team can also help an existing business transition to a new legal entity.
Creation and Analysis of Business Contracts
There are numerous types of contracts that a business may need to be drafted or reviewed by a business law attorney in Charlotte. Operating without this legal guidance makes a business or owners vulnerable to lawsuits. Without a well-written contract, companies also have little standing to seek legal remedies against parties who wrong them.
Our lawyers at Jetton & Meredith can craft or analyze business contracts such as the following:
- Partnership agreements
- Tenant/Lease agreements
- Equipment lease agreements
- Non-disclosure agreements
- Non-compete agreements
- Non-solicitation agreements
- General employment contracts
- Contractor agreements
- Purchase or sale of a business agreements
- Franchise agreements
- Independent contractor agreements
Contracts are a vital part of a business. These legal documents ensure all parties understand their obligations, rights, and limitations. Everyone has more clarity. A well-written contract is the foundation of a successful business relationship. Our team can help business owners reduce their exposure to misunderstandings and lawsuits.
Support for Employee and Independent Contractor Issues
Improper classification of employees and independent contractors is one of the most common business errors. If a Charlotte company categorizes a worker as an independent contractor when they should be an employee, that business could be liable for paying the worker back overtime and owe thousands of dollars in unpaid taxes.
We advise business owners on the difference between an employee and an independent contractor so they can avoid the legal pitfalls of misclassification.
Other employee and contractor issues can be avoided through effective contracts, procedures, and policies that outline roles and responsibilities. Despite efforts by a business, an employee or contractor may still come forward with complaints against the company, its leadership, or fellow workers.
Our business law attorneys will help Charlotte business owners understand how various state and federal laws impact their company:
- North Carolina Equal Employment Practice Act
- North Carolina Wage and Hour Act
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Title VII
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act
- Fair Labor Standards Act
We have experience in protecting and preserving the rights of businesses and defending them against allegations when needed.
Third-Party Business Disputes Impact Bottom Line
Third-party vendors are vital keys to the success of many companies. Cloud hosting providers, SaaS software solutions, payment processors, suppliers, consultants, and others help a business serve its customers or clients. A vendor that falls short of its duties can cause significant harm to a business.
Grounds for a lawsuit might exist if either side of a business relationship no longer acts in good faith. At Jetton & Meredith, we stand behind businesses that have suffered financial or reputational harm because of the actions or inactions of a third party. We also defend commercial enterprises being sued for breach of contract or other accusations.
Protection and Litigation for Intellectual Property
Intellectual property (IP) is increasingly the linchpin for the success of businesses of all sizes and is often the most valuable asset.
Examples of critical IP include the following:
- Utility patents
- Design patents
Intellectual property can be important in any business, but the following sectors most commonly rely on IP for their operations:
- Wholesale and retail trade
- Professional, technical, management, and administrative services
North Carolina’s IP-intensive industries’ share of private sector employment is higher than the national average. Our attorneys guide individuals and businesses through obtaining patents, trademarks, or copyrights and fight those who infringe on that IP. Our team can also draft policies and procedures that protect trade secrets.
Some companies hold their IP solely for their use, but there are business ventures that include licensing and development agreements. Situations arise when a company may want to acquire or sell intellectual property. Contact us to draft these documents.
We have experience in various legal actions related to intellectual property:
- Infringement claims
- Trade secret claims
- Injunctions and restraining orders
Advice for Data Security and Protectives
Operating a business today requires considerations unheard of as little as 30 years ago. The internet has completely changed the landscape of business ownership. Technology has led to incredible advances as well as compliance and data privacy standards that companies must follow.
The regulatory environment of data protection and cybersecurity is shifting. Company leadership is challenged to stay updated on all that is required. Let the lawyers at Jetton & Meredith, PLLC shoulder that burden for you. Establishing protocols to protect client, employee, and business data can mitigate the possibility of a data loss or breach.
Our insightful attorneys advise clients on steps they must take to maintain compliance with regulations like the following:
- Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)
- Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
- Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA)
- Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA)
- Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)
- Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
Comprehensive Legal Solutions for Charlotte Businesses
The strength of North Carolina’s economy relies on vibrant local companies of all sizes. If you are an individual needing assistance to establish a sole proprietorship or are part of a large corporation negotiating a merger, our attorneys have the experience, knowledge, and discernment to help you take the next step.
Count on our team to guide you through employee issues, contracts, regulatory compliance, and litigation.
Prompt, thorough, understanding and knowledgeable, are only a few of the adjectives that describe Jetton & Meredith. Fabulous lawyers, highly recommend for any family law cases!!- Former Client
Eric Meredith represented me during what turned out to be a lengthy divorce settlement. During the first meeting, he fully explained the process ahead and answered all my questions and concerns. I still remember the feeling of relief after that meeting knowing I had a true professional in my corner. Eric, along with his Paralegal Julie, kept me updated along the way and were quick to respond with any additional issues. Not only did he call with any updates to the case, he also would ask how I was doing. I cannot recommend Eric at Jetton & Meredith enough.- Tim
I highly recommend Mark. I hired him to handle a simple assault charge that was filed against me. Mark handled it professionally and expeditiously. He explained each step in the process, and everything happened just as he described. He is exactly the type of lawyer you want representing you.- J&M Client
Great service and very personal. Jetton & Meredith are very hardworking attorneys. I will recommend Jetton & Meredith to anyone in need.- Former Client
I cannot stress enough how great the customer service was with Jetton & Meredith, with my case being a little more complicated I had the opportunity to work with both Mr. Jetton and Mr. Meredith. I can say they know their stuff, Mr. Jetton was able to get my case dismissed the first time we went to court, no questions asked. Working with Mr. Meredith was a longer process but he walked me through the steps and gave me realistic expectations of an outcome that he was able to provide just as he stated he would do. I couldn’t be more pleased with my decision to hire Jetton & Meredith as my attorneys, and I would highly recommend them to anyone in need of an attorney!- Former Client
This law office far exceeded my expectations. All options and possible outcomes were set before me from the start and everything was handled in a professional and timely manner. Not only will I use this law firm again, but I would also and have already recommended them to the people I care most for. Thank you for all you’ve done.- Former Client