Protect Your Rights by Staying on Top of Important Business Deadlines

Owners of small businesses face many deadlines in the course of running their businesses. These deadlines may  Protect Your Rights by Staying on Top of Important Business Deadlines by Harlan Levinerelate to regulatory compliance, contracts or litigation.

It seems that new regulations are being passed every month.  In New York, for instance, the paid family leave law goes into effect on January 1, 2018.  Since this program is funded by employee deductions, the law provides that employers can begin making applicable deductions beginning July 1, 2017; only a couple of weeks away.   

Other regulatory filing deadlines apply in the ordinary course including renewal of Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) security interests, annual or biennial corporation and LLC filings, and trademark renewals.

Missing contract deadlines can be devastating to your business. Leases, for instance, often set deadline dates by which a renewal option has to be exercised. If you miss that deadline, your landlord has the right to lease the space to another tenant upon lease expiration.

Alternatively, contracts, particularly those with service providers, have automatic renewals. If you fail to notify the service provider of your desire to terminate a contract by a deadline date before expiration, the contract will automatically renew; often for lengthy renewal terms and at terms that are no longer competitive in the market.

Oftentimes, deadlines in contracts are not clearly discernable and need to be calculated from completion of another triggering date or event. While it’s best to have your lawyer review contracts before you sign them, if you have entered into contracts that have not been reviewed by your lawyer, you should consider having your lawyer audit those contracts so they can help you keep track of important dates (and other important contract terms).

Failing to adhere to litigation deadlines, such as the deadline to respond to a summons and complaint served upon you, can also lead to devastating or costly consequences. Your failure to respond in a timely basis, even as soon as the day following the date an answer is due, can lead to judgment being entered against you for the full amount alleged in the complaint – which is often far more than what may really be owed.

Consult an attorney immediately upon being served (or, in the case of a claim that is covered by insurance, tender it to your insurance broker).

All business owners face deadlines on a regular basis. Be proactive. Call Levine Law, LLC at (516) 921-6700 and let us review your organizational structure, filing requirements, leases and contracts and litigation status. Spending a few dollars with Levine Law, LLC now will enable you to stay ahead of the curve and grow your business rather than spending thousands to salvage it in the future.


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