Author Archives: Harlan Levine

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About Harlan Levine

Harlan Levine is a member and founder of Levine Law, LLC in Syosset, NY.
EMAIL: hlevine@levinelawllc.com
BIO: About Harlan
PHONE: 516.921.6700

What It Means to Be a Resourceful Attorney
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Authored by , re: Business Law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What It Means to Be a Resourceful Attorney | Harlan Levine

{3:10 minutes to read} Your attorney is a valuable resource—take advantage of his contacts. When an opportunity or problem arises, clients often do not hesitate to call their attorney. In addition to legal work, however, many attorneys have exposure to a network of other clients and business contacts that clients can benefit from. Your attorney can be a valuable resource for information, opportunities, and networkingwhether in your core business or a business in which you’d consider diversifying.

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What Would Darwin Say to Today’s Businesses? Adapt!
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Authored by , re: Business Law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What Would Darwin Say to Today’s Businesses? Adapt! | Harlan Levine

{4:15 minutes to read} To appeal to new customers, businesses—and their owners— must be adaptable. Two weeks ago, I met with a potential new client who happened to be in his early 30s. As usual, I wore a suit and tie to our meeting. I thought one could never go wrong dressing like that, and that it’s always a safe bet; but for the first time, I felt there was a generational disconnect. Had I dressed neatly, but more casually, I would have been perceived more as a peer that the potential client could trust and relate to.

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Why Throw Money at a Problem When Your Attorney Can Provide a Better Solution for Less?
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Authored by , re: Business Law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Why Throw Money at a Problem When Your Attorney Can Provide a Better Solution for Less? | Harlan Levine

{4:30 minutes to read} Resist the temptation of instant gratification for your legal problems and business decisions. Clients often call attorneys to get them out of legal jams or to help them negotiate complex situations. Obviously, they’re reaching out because they recognize their attorney’s expertise and skill. But many clients are so averse to conflict, they’re too willing to pay things off to get rid of a legal problem. This ends up costing them far more money than paying their attorney for the legal advice and services they called him or her for in the first place.

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Listening to Your Attorney’s Advice is the Smartest Thing You Can Do
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Authored by , re: Business Law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Listening to Your Attorney’s Advice is the Smartest Thing You Can Do | Harlan Levine

{2:30 minutes to read} If you are considering entering into a contract or agreement, particularly one that involves a good deal of money, it is important to consult an experienced and capable attorney to represent your interests. However, that is only the first step.   The next step is to make sure that you actually heed the advice of the attorney representing you. While this seems obvious, clients often fail to listen to their attorney’s advice. The most common reason clients fail to listen to their attorney is that they are so anxious to get the agreement signed and believe the details are either insignificant or can be sorted out later. Unfortunately, this type of thinking is often a recipe for disaster. A good attorney will treat your matter as a priority and work as quickly as the other party and its representatives are able or willing.

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The Disappearing Voice of the Small Business
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Authored by , re: Business Law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
The Disappearing Voice of the Small Business | Harlan Levine

{Read in 3 minutes} Large corporations often retain lobbyists or employ government relations professionals to advance their agendas. But how do small businesses make their voices heard? Historically, small businesses relied upon their full-service distributors or trade associations, who themselves employed government relations specialists to promote their interests and that of their customers and members. But in recent years, many small businesses have migrated to distributors solely based upon price, and trade associations are consolidating, now often comprised of members of diverse sizes and conflicting agendas. Some cooperatives encourage member participation in the legislative process and make great efforts toward effectuating change. Others simply focus little on their government relations efforts.

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Why You Should Care About Keeping Good Books
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Authored by , re: Accounting & Bookkeeping, on .
Why You Should Care About Keeping Good Books | Harlan Levine

{2:20 minutes to read} Keeping good books and records is a fundamental aspect of owning any business. Not only is it good practice, but it is required by law and often required by a company’s governing documents such as its bylaws, operating agreement or shareholder agreement. Yet the maintenance of company books is often neglected.

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Finding Real Solutions to Food Deserts
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Authored by , re: Business Law, on .
Finding Real Solutions to Food Deserts | Harlan Levine

{2:55 minutes to read} “Food desert” is a popular term in the media these days. The term is used to describe a geographic area in which affordable, healthy foods are not sufficiently available. They tend to occur in low-income urban areas. One might argue that there really is no such thing as a food desert. The fact that an area is void of national chain supermarkets does not make it a food desert. Independent operators have been serving these communities for decades. Sound business judgment indicates that these operators sell the types of products that their customers demand, not what a government agency has determined is appropriate.

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Hidden Charges and Bad Faith Are Rooted out in Lease Audits
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Authored by , re: Real Estate, on .
Hidden Charges and Bad Faith Are Rooted out in Lease Audits | Harlan Levine

{5 minutes to read} If you are the tenant under a commercial lease, there is a good chance you are being overcharged. Studies suggest that as many as 75% of tenants are being overcharged by their landlords, sometimes inadvertently, sometimes not. Tenants typically focus on the monthly rent, but overcharges are frequently seen in billing for Common Area Maintenance (CAM) charges which includes the landlord’s maintenance, operational and, often, administrative costs of the property. In most cases, the tenant is responsible for a certain percentage of CAM costs.

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Succession Planning: How to Make Your Business Your Legacy
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Authored by , re: Financial Planning & Insurance, on .
Succession Planning: How to Make Your Business Your Legacy | Harlan Levine

{2:20 minutes to read} Many business owners fail to realize that the small businesses they started years ago are now very valuable. Therefore, transitioning a business from one generation to the next is extremely important. If you are a business owner, it is critical to have a succession plan in case something happens to you — or if you just want to take it a little easier. A succession plan is important to ensure a smooth ownership transition with minimal uncertainty and conflict. It usually involves:

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Do All Your Registrations Have Up-To-Date Information?
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Authored by , re: Business Law, on .
Do All Your Registrations Have Up-To-Date Information? | Harlan Levine

{1:40 minutes to read} Recently, a client contacted me after receiving some Environmental Control Board (ECB) violations. Because my client hadn’t updated his address with the ECB, the violations were sent to his old address. By the time the mail was forwarded, several months had elapsed — past the point of appeal. As a result, rather than having an opportunity to rectify the violation and/or paying a simple $100 fine, my client had to pay the maximum $1,000 fine for each violation. My client’s only recourse would have been to bring an Article 78 proceeding, but the cost of doing so would have exceeded the amount of the assessed fines.

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Before You Sign That Contract…
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Authored by , re: Business Law, on .
Before You Sign That Contract… | Harlan Levine

{Read in 5:10 minutes} When presented with a contract to sign, many business owners quickly check the cost and sign away. Too often, however, these contracts contain terms that are far different than what the business owner thought he or she was committing to. Whether it’s a lease, a lease renewal, or a contract for services or products, the language and terms of a contract can have a huge impact on your bottom line—for better or, more often, for worse. Despite What You May Think, Your Salesperson Is Not Always Your Friend.

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Navigating Your Way Through an ADA Claim
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Authored by , re: LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Navigating Your Way Through an ADA Claim | Harlan Levine

{1:13 minutes to read} More and more of my clients—landlords and tenants alike—are being sued for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and similar state statutes. Attorneys specializing in the discipline typically find “serial plaintiffs” to visit numerous properties and file suits alleging that the properties are not accessible to persons with disabilities. Typically, a suit is filed without first serving a demand letter. Because insurance often does not cover such claims, clients are “forced” to settle rather than incur high defense costs, despite having valid defenses.

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