Forming a Business is as Easy as 1, 2, 3

September 19th, 2012

1. Hire an Accountant and a Lawyer.

  • Advise on choosing the appropriate type of business entity
  • Advise on business laws and tax laws
  • Advise on how to operate business

2.  Form your business . . . legally!

  • File Articles with the State of Michigan
  • Find forms and filing requirements from the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (“LARA”) http://www.michigan.gov/lara/
  • Comply with State law and tax laws
  • Obtain necessary insurance and permits

3. Protect your business name.

  • Search LARA’s website to see if any other business has your name at http://www.dleg.state.mi.us/bcs_corp/sr_corp.asp
  • Secure your domain name(s)
  • Claim your Twitter handle
  • Secure your business name on other social media sites
  • Consider filing a trademark
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Posted in Business Owners, Forming a Business, Law | No Comments »

Update on Ban on Employer Access to Social Media Passwords

September 7th, 2012

Earlier this year, there was much discussion in the media about employers asking for Facebook passwords. I posted about this topic in March. Well subsequent to this, at least two States, Maryland and Illinois, have enacted legislation banning employers from asking for passwords to social media sites. Congress has also taken up this issue by introducing the Social Networking Online Protection Act, or SNOPA for short.

 

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Jurors Could be Instructed Against Using Social Media

September 5th, 2012

The federal Judicial Conference committee has developed a new set of model jury instructions regarding jurors use of social media. It expands upon a previous ban of social media usage while serving as a juror and puts in simple terms that jurors are not allowed to use any electronic tool or talk about the case, period, outside of jury deliberations.

A press release regarding the new model jury instructions discusses this in more detail.

You can obtain a copy of the model jury instructions here.

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Asking for Facebook Passwords Could Be An Invasion of Privacy

March 28th, 2012

Lately, employers and schools are asking, and some even demanding, applicants to give their Facebook passwords. If you don’t, you don’t get the job or acceptance into the school. This seems like it would be a gross invasion of our privacy.

You can make a strong argument that asking for your Facebook password is an illegal intrusion into your private life. The most important legal element in an intrusion case is what courts call “a reasonable expectation of privacy.” Most Facebook users reasonably expect that their Facebook accounts are private, especially if they use Facebook’s privacy settings to set their accounts to private. But determining what is a reasonable expectation of privacy is very subjective with varying differences of opinions on whether information you put on the Internet is private.

The question we should all be asking is whether any of us have a reasonable expectation of privacy with the information that we post on the Internet.  Some believe that once you post something online it is no longer private while others believe that if your Facebook account is set to private then everything you post is private. I think both sides of this debate have valid points of view.  Regardless of which side you fall in line with, should employers and schools demand an applicant’s Facebook password?

Looking at this from an invasion of privacy case, I think employers and schools should not demand an applicant’s Facebook password. Getting your password means that they have access to everything you have access to, which means that they can see information that your friends post on their accounts. So not only are they looking at your information, they now have the ability to look at the information of all of your friends.  I think that goes too far and employers and schools should not be able to have such broad access.

What do you think? Should employers and schools have access to your Facebook account?

 

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Posted in Law, Social Media | 1 Comment »

Coming off of One Year Hiatus

March 7th, 2012

I just realized it has been one year since I last posted anything on this blog. A lot has happened over the past year, both personal and professional. But now I am ready to get back to blogging on this site. I will start posting about forming a business, hot topics in the world of contract law, media law, legal issues in social media, life as a large law firm associate, and life as an in-house counsel. I also plan to provide advice to law students, young lawyers and those considering going to law school in my blog posts.

Stay tuned!

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Speaking Engagement: Marketing Your Practice Using Social Media

March 13th, 2011

I will be speaking this ICLE seminar on April 12, 2011 on how I have used social media to create new opportunities and increase my network.

For more information about this seminar and to register, visit the ICLE seminar website.

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Speaking Engagement: Attorney Ethics Using Social Media

September 28th, 2010

I will be presenting at this year’s State Bar of Michigan Annual Meeting Solo & Small Firm Institute “Social Networking in Your Law Practice” program in Grand Rapids. My presentation will focus on Attorney ethics in using social media and networking online.

For those attending the Annual Meeting Solo & Small Firm Institute, my presentation will be at 4pm on Friday, October 1.

Here is a link to the schedule of events for the Annual Meeting and Institute.

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Social Media Law 101

May 13th, 2010

I will be co-presenting at the next Social Media Michigan on the topic of Social Media law.

Here are the details of the meeting:

Date:          Thursday, May 20, 2010

Time:          6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Location:  38777 Six Mile Road, Suite 410 Livonia, Michigan 48154

You can register here: http://www.socialmediami.com/register/

Posted in Social Media | 4 Comments »

NASABA Executive Committee

May 1st, 2010

Over the past year I have been serving on the Executive Committee of the North American South Asian Bar Association (“NASABA”) as its Treasurer.  I am pleased to announce that I will be serving as Treasurer on the Executive Committee of NASABA for one more year.

Congratulations to all of the new Executive Committee officers who will serve NASABA for the 2010-2011 year!

  • President – Anna Sankaran
  • President-Elect — Jolsna John
  • Secretary – Tarun Chandran
  • Treasurer – Priya Marwah Doornbos
  • Vice President-Memberships — Emilie Ninan
  • Vice President-Public Relations — Chintan Amin
  • Vice President-Affiliate Relationships — Manjit Gill
  • Vice President-Community Outreach — Paul Saghera
  • Vice President-Convention — Ankita Patel (appointed by SABA SoCal for the 2011 NASABA Convention Host Chapter

I look forward to working with all of you next year to make another successful year for NASABA and South Asian Attorneys everywhere!

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Top 5 Things Businesses Should Know About Michigan's New Smoking Ban

April 29th, 2010

On May 1, 2010, Michigan will become the 38th State to ban smoking in public places.

The law, which is known as the Dr. Ron Davis Smoke-Free Air Law, was passed by the Michigan legislature on December 10, 2009.  It was signed into law by Governor Jennifer Granholm on December 18, 2009.  The law applies to most public places including, but not limited to, restaurants, bars, shopping malls, bowling alleys, concert halls, arenas, museums, mechanic shops, health facilities, nursing homes, education facilities, and child care centers.  It does not apply to cigar bars, tobacco specialty retail stores, and the gaming floors of Detroit’s three casinos.  The law also does not apply to Native American land, including the Indian casinos.

In order to comply with this new statewide law, here are the top 5 things that businesses in Michigan should know:

  1. Businesses must clearly and conspicuously post “no smoking” signs or the international “no smoking” symbol at each entrance and in other areas where smoking is prohibited under the law.
  2. Businesses must remove ashtrays and other smoking paraphernalia from anywhere where smoking is prohibited.
  3. The business owners and operators must inform individuals smoking in violation of the law that they are in violation of state law and are subject to penalties.
  4. The business must refuse service to an individual smoking in violation of the Smoke Free Law.
  5. The business must ask an individual smoking in violation of the law to refrain from smoking and, if the individual continues to smoke in violation of the Smoke Free Law, ask him or her to leave.

The burden is on the business owners and operators to ensure compliance with the Smoke-Free Law.  If you have any questions or concerns regarding compliance with the Smoke-Free Law, please feel free to post a comment or contact me.

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Posted in Business Owners, Law | 1 Comment »