Category Archives

When Are Oral Contracts Enforceable in Washington?

A handshake and a promise may be an amicable and honorable way to make an agreement, but is it legally binding? In Washington, the answer is:  sometimes.  Whether an oral contract is enforceable in Washington depends upon the circumstances surrounding the terms of the agreement—most notably, whether the agreement falls under the provisions of the so-called “Statute of Frauds,” ...

A handshake and a promise may be an amicable and honorable way to make an agreement, but is it legally binding? In Washington, the answer is:  sometimes.  Whether an oral ...

Responding the Right Way to a Lawsuit against Your Small Business

You just received a summons and complaint filed against your company by an employee, vendor or supplier, client, or customer.   What you do in immediate response may have a profound effect on what follows.  To position your company for the best possible outcome, here are five things to keep in mind in every case. 1.  Do Not Communicate or ...

You just received a summons and complaint filed against your company by an employee, vendor or supplier, client, or customer.   What you do in immediate response may have a profound ...

Class Certification in Wage & Hour Class Actions

“Now this is not the end.  It is not even the beginning of the end.  But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” —Winston Churchill, 1942 The inherited wisdom about wage-and-hour class actions is that they settle after certification.  The assumption is that certification in wage-and-hour class actions is the decisive battle in the war; if lost, the ...

“Now this is not the end.  It is not even the beginning of the end.  But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” —Winston Churchill, 1942 The inherited wisdom ...

Minority Shareholder Rights in Washington

The Rights of Minority Shareholders in Washington Minority shareholders—those who don’t own a controlling interest in a corporation—frequently do not have a say in corporate financial or management decisions.  And in closely held corporations, such shareholders also may not be able to easily sell their stock.  But the law provides certain protections.  Among other things, Washington law gives minority ...

The Rights of Minority Shareholders in Washington Minority shareholders—those who don’t own a controlling interest in a corporation—frequently do not have a say in corporate financial or management decisions.  And ...

Not-So-Fraudulent Inducement: Can a Will Based on False Information be Invalidated If the Person Providing It Thought It Was True?

A will that does not reflect the true intent and free will of the person making it (the “testator”) is not valid. One familiar illustration of this basic principle is the requirement that the testator have the requisite mental (“testamentary”) capacity to do so. Another all-too-common concern arises where the testator, often elderly and with reduced mental and physical ...

A will that does not reflect the true intent and free will of the person making it (the “testator”) is not valid. One familiar illustration of this basic principle is ...

Arbitration: One Size Doesn’t Fit All

Arbitration’s near-ubiquitous use in commercial contracts makes it appear to be a handy one-size-fits-all alternative to courtroom litigation for business disputes. Unfortunately, as with most things in the world of dispute resolution, looks can be deceiving. Here are several questions to ask when weighing whether arbitration will fit your particular business needs. How important is the case? As a ...

Arbitration’s near-ubiquitous use in commercial contracts makes it appear to be a handy one-size-fits-all alternative to courtroom litigation for business disputes. Unfortunately, as with most things in the world of ...

Why Arbitration?

Increasingly, companies are including arbitration agreements in their contracts with employees, customers, and each other, with the idea that arbitration will shield them from unwanted cost, delay, publicity, or liability. Among other things, there is a general consensus that arbitration avoids wasteful and expensive discovery, leads to quicker and more predictable outcomes, and sidesteps messy jury trials. But are ...

Increasingly, companies are including arbitration agreements in their contracts with employees, customers, and each other, with the idea that arbitration will shield them from unwanted cost, delay, publicity, or liability. ...

Writing the Rules of Your Next Arbitration – Part Four

Some Critical Opportunities to Consider When Your Agreement is Made Part Four of Four (read Part One, Part Two, and Part Three) Unlike court rules, none of the ready-made sets of procedural rules for arbitration is set in stone. Agreements to arbitrate—and governing how to arbitrate—are just that: agreements. As a result, almost the whole of the arbitration process ...

Some Critical Opportunities to Consider When Your Agreement is Made Part Four of Four (read Part One, Part Two, and Part Three) Unlike court rules, none of the ready-made sets ...

Writing the Rules of Your Next Arbitration – Part Three

Discovery and Depositions Vary Greatly Depending on the Rules You Selected Part Three of Four (read Part One, and Part Two) Perhaps the most significant area of difference among the various arbitration rules out there also is one where the differences are most significant: discovery. For example, under the AAA rules, an arbitrator “may” require the parties to exchange ...

Discovery and Depositions Vary Greatly Depending on the Rules You Selected Part Three of Four (read Part One, and Part Two) Perhaps the most significant area of difference among the ...

Writing the Rules of Your Next Arbitration – Part Two

Some Surprises You’ll Find Inside the Most Common Rules Part Two of Four (read Part One here) Some of the ramifications of a provision calling for arbitration with, for example, the AAA or under AAA procedural rules might surprise people. For instance, even when parties only agree to arbitrate under AAA rules, they also agree—by virtue of those rules—that ...

Some Surprises You’ll Find Inside the Most Common Rules Part Two of Four (read Part One here) Some of the ramifications of a provision calling for arbitration with, for example, ...