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What are "water rights" in Nevada business litigation?

Many people throughout the U.S. don't give much thought to water. They go to the sink, or get in the shower, turn the tap and there it is. However, in many places in the western United States, such as Nevada, water is a scarce resource, and is utilized by many types of organizations and businesses. As such, there can sometimes be disagreements on who gets to use some amount of water from a particular source. To deal with this, Nevada, like many states, has come up with a legal framework for dealing with water rights.

The first thing to understand is that water rights are considered private property, and as such can be bought, sold or traded between and among individuals and businesses. It should be noted that it is the use of the water right that is property, not the right itself. Part of Nevada's regulatory framework is the concept of "use it or lose it." This is, a person or entity with a water right must put that right to actual, beneficial use, rather than just speculating on the possible future use of the right.

What is a Nevada "LLC"?

Many Nevada residents are likely aware that people who run businesses are often encouraged to "incorporate." There are different ways to run businesses, and creating a corporate entity is one way to take advantage of certain business structures. Most people probably link this activity to businesses that have the abbreviation "inc." after their names, standing for "incorporated." However, there are other types of business structures, including one that has become widely used over the past several decades in Nevada and around the country: a "Limited Liability Company'" or "LLC."

LLCs have seen rising popularity for several reasons. First, just like other forms of corporate structures, these companies provide asset protection for the personal property of their owners. That is, if a creditor goes after the LLC for an unpaid debt or other liability, that creditor can normally only reach those assets controlled by the company, rather than those owned personally by the officers of the corporation. Contrast this with a sole proprietorship, where if the business owes a debt the owner's house, car and other assets could be in jeopardy.

Your intellectual property is valuable

It used to be that the most valuable items your business could hold were the inventory you could protect with a lock and key. These days, however, with technology and internet capabilities, it is increasingly easier for others to ride on your coattails by stealing your intellectual property or profiting from your established brand.

Nevertheless, you can still take steps to protect what is rightfully yours and the benefits you may reap from your ideas and products. By investigating the various forms of legal registration, you may find the most appropriate method of safeguarding your hard work and creativity.

What is a common-interest community in Nevada?

Like many Western states, Nevada has seen an uptick in the number of residents who move to the state to retire. With the beautiful scenery, mostly pleasant weather, and large open spaces, the state is a welcoming place to live for many people who are in the post-career phase of their lives. For many of these individuals, with their children grown, and the physical requirements of caring for a single-family house getting more difficult to accept, the idea of having a smaller dwelling and someone to take care of certain maintenance issues is appealing. These people may profit from looking at the various 'common interest communities' that are available to them.

A common-interest community is one in which the people own a dwelling unit, and by virtue of that ownership, are responsible for paying a portion of the real estate taxes, insurance and other costs associated with the property. These properties are usually governed by a 'declaration' that sets out the obligations of every owner, and whether they need to contribute for improvements, maintenance and other costs required by the property's management. This generally applies only to ownership interests and not leases that are less than 20 years in length.

What exactly is undue influence?

In the midst of a legal dispute over a will, trust or guardianship, families and others may throw around the phrase undue influence, which is in fact a legal term of art. However, few people in Henderson or the rest of the greater Las Vegas area may not know precisely what that terms means or what exactly it entails.

Claiming undue influence is one way an aggrieved person, such as a disinherited family member, may choose to challenge a will. As a word of caution to those who may throw the phrase around too freely, it does not mean that certain relatives may be closer to a deceased person than were others. Nor does it mean that a family other or friend is not allowed to make his or her wishes or desires known clearly when it comes to estate planning.

How can Nevada businesses protect against litigation?

Running a business can be difficult. It does not matter whether it is a multi-national, billion-dollar corporation or a small family-owned store. There are numerous pitfalls when dealing with government, employees, customers and other businesses. There are many chances of things going wrong, and for conflicts to ensue, whether it is a dispute over a contract or protecting confidential information, customer lists or trade secrets. When this happens, businesses can face the prospect of litigation. But, how can a business owner avoid such costly experiences, or at least be prepared if they occur?

The first rule of modern Nevada business should be knowing with whom one is dealing. From suppliers to subcontractors, it is important that companies do their due diligence on those with whom they do business. Does the other party have a history of contract breaching? Has it filed bankruptcy numerous times to get out of its debts? Is there any history of illegal or unethical behavior that might cause a company to become involved in a regulatory nightmare?

Don't buy problems when buying a business

Business law issues are complex, and buying an existing Nevada business is no exception to this. There are many complex and difficult issues to consider when taking this step, and it is beneficial to think about how to mitigate potential problems before they arise. There are procedures to follow and things that you would be wise to do and know in order to protect your financial and legal interests. 

You have likely already put in a significant amount of research into this decision. It can take a long time to actually complete this process, and consequently, it is beneficial to have both support and guidance to bring this effort to a successful conclusion.

Electronic wills are convenient by controversial

A will puts legal effect to the wishes of a deceased person. The person who signs the will is known as the testator, and the law requires several formalities intended to ensure that the will truly represents the wishes of the testator. If the formality requirements are not satisfied, a probate court will likely find that the will is not valid. These requirements are often the subject of heated probate litigation.

The states have different laws and some have very different sets of formality requirements for wills. Most require the will to be on paper and signed by the testator in the presence of two impartial witnesses. This requirement is intended to show that the testator was not coerced or tricked into signing something that did not accurately reflect his or her wishes.

What to consider with a business partnership

Starting a business may leave a new entrepreneur with feelings of both excitement and fear. While Americans throughout the United States, including many from Henderson and Las Vegas, Nevada, and the surrounding area, are adapting to an ever-evolving economy and fluid business climate, more businesses are starting to pop up to take advantage of new opportunities.

If you are considering starting a joint venture with a new partner or partners, there are several things you should keep in mind. The old proverb, "one and one is more than two" when regarding relationships, including business relationships, certainly holds true. It is important that both you and your partner have a strongly written general partnership.

What is "med/arb" in Nevada business litigation?

Nevada residents who are involved in business are most likely aware of the concept of "alternative dispute resolution." These methods are an alternative to traditional litigation, and include the well-known processes of mediation and arbitration. Many modern corporate contracts contain clauses requiring various issues to be submitted to mediation or arbitration before they end up in a traditional court.

Many legal professionals, however, especially those involved with corporate litigation, look at full litigation on business disputes as the "alternative" to reaching a settlement through other means. For various reasons, including unpredictability, delay, the public nature of the proceedings and the ultimate costs involved, bringing business litigation to a close through a trial is often not ideal. There is one form of alternative resolution that is gaining popularity in Nevada and elsewhere, and that is the use of "med/arb."

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