San Diego Business Lawyers

Gehres Law Group, P.C.

4275 Executive Square
Suite 200

San Diego, California 92037

Phone(858) 964-2314 or(877) 333-2420
Fax (858) 964-2301

Law Firm Overview

Our Team of experienced San Diego Small Business attorneys specialize in all aspects of business law including, but not limited to: Business Formation, Contracts, Employment issues, Civil litigation, Mediation, Trademarks and Copyrights.

In an effort to provide the best service and


Areas of Law


















Articles Published by Gehres Law Group, P.C.

 Expressing Your Wishes and Mitigating Tensions Through Letters of Intention

The estate planning process can be an overwhelming experience for clients. After all, we are discussing a pretty unpleasant topic (your ultimate demise), and what will happen when you’re gone. It is an inevitable part of life as we know.

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 Look Before You Leap! Don’t Sue for an Uncollectable Judgment

When a client walks in the door and says “I really don’t care about the money, it’s just the ‘principle’ of the matter,” the wise lawyer may reply: “You shouldn’t sue for ‘principle’, unless it’s ‘principal plus interest’”, i.e. money.

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 Legal Considerations When Buying a Business: Summary of the M&A Process

Thinking of buying a business? For any arms’ length transaction, it is critical that buyers take certain steps during the purchase process (also referred to as the M&A process) to protect their legal and financial interests. Assuming the buyer has already identified a viable target company to purchase, we summarize here the essential next steps in this M&A process.

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 Importance of Annual Meetings for California Corporations

Did you know that failing to address your company’s corporate and legal compliance issues can lead to costly and avoidable consequences?

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 Considerations in Choosing a Trademark

The process of developing a successful brand for your business can be difficult and overwhelming. One must consider a variety of factors, including the products or services that will be associated with a specific mark and decide how to effectively market them with a strong, unique brand, such that consumers will develop trust and goodwill in the business.

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 Waiver of Unknown Claims under California Code §1542

In settlement agreements, one or more parties may waive their right to pursue recourse against other parties to the agreement in return for some form of consideration, such as a payment of money. However, what if a party is unaware of certain claims they may have against the party they are releasing–could they then accept the described consideration and still turn around and pursue legal action against the released party once they become aware of the grounds for their claim?

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 Considerations in Settling a California Dispute

[There are] advantages of filing a lawsuit, even where you know from the outset that the other party will likely agree to settle, so you can use a “Stipulated Judgment”, under CA Code of Civ. Procedure § 664.6 to aid in collection efforts if the settlement is not timely paid.

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 Video Recording on Private Property in California

Over the years, clients have inquired about the legality of installing video cameras on their privately owned commercial real estate or business premises. The short answer is that such recordings are legal in California. However, a more complete answer requires that legal counsel for the client determine whether such recordings violate (or may foreseeably violate) a person’s constitutional right or reasonable expectation of privacy in the recorded area.

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 Arbitration Agreements Including Emergency Relief Provisions

There are many sorts of business disputes where “emergency relief” may be called for. One common example is where trade secrets are stolen, often by employees or former employees. In view of that possibility, it is common for employment agreements to not only require the employees agree not to divulge company trade secrets, but likewise authorize the employer to seek emergency, “injunctive relief” to stop the use of stolen trade secrets.

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 Required Notices for Terminating Employees in California

These lists of notices are grouped by federal requirements and California requirements.

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 Trademarking a Name or a Logo or Both?

In establishing a new business, owners often seek legal advice in connection with branding their business by developing and securing their company’s intellectual property. Part of this inquiry typically involves the question, “Should we seek trademark registration of the named business brand or the company’s design logos, or both?”

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 California’s New Overtime Exempt Minimum Increases to $41,600 and Minimum Wage Set to Increase to $15 per Hour

Many of our business clients are still adjusting to the new California minimum wage, which increased to $10.00 per hour as of January 1, 2016. This state-wide increase has also resulted in a surge in the annual amount California employees must earn to satisfy the “salary test”

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 California’s “Good Faith Settlement” Law: An Example from a Recent Case

Lawsuits are expensive, as we all know, and as experienced business law litigators, we frequently find ourselves advising our business clients to settle their claims, usually at some reduced value, rather than pursue expensive, distracting litigation. But sometimes, even where your adversary is willing to agree to pay a reasonable settlement amount, filing a lawsuit may be advantageous.

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 Guarding Against Personal Liability for Rental Property Owners in California

Big rewards can be reaped by owning investment properties, but so too can big risks. One common threat real estate investors wish to avoid is personal liability for judgments resulting from a lawsuit.

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 You Can Stop Trademark Infringement

You have gone through the painstaking process of starting a business, developing a brand for your business, namely, your business’ trademark, invested significant time and resources into this development, and suddenly you discover another business is using your exact trademark or a similar one. What can you do?

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 An Ode to Honesty in Business Practices

As a trial lawyer, there is nothing I enjoy more than an honest client with a righteous case. Hallelujah! So many people use lawyers as henchmen, to bully their enemies and competitors, with lies. But when I have a client who has been cheated or harmed, and is truly a victim, a victim of lies!!!!….that is the case I want. That is, usually…a winning case!

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 Purchasing a Business with Seller Financing

It is often the case that a purchaser of a business does not have the resources for a full cash sale and will request that the seller finance some of the purchase price. This can be advantageous for both parties, but requires that the parties consider a number of issues, as we highlight in this article.

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 California's Real Estate Transfer Disclosure Statement

If you are selling or leasing your home, you must comply with the Real Estate Transfer Disclosure Law. That law requires that sellers provide the prospective buyer with a Real Estate Transfer Disclosure Statement (“TDS”).

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 Anti-SLAPP Motions in Connection with Employment Law Claims

Employers and employees alike should be aware of the not-so-new litigation device known as the anti-SLAPP motion to strike. This motion, typically filed in the early stages of a case, is designed to strike a Complaint before it gets off the ground.

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 Business Litigation: Swinging a Bigger Stick

Everyone knows that litigation is an expensive distraction from the true mission of any business. Good management, with well drafted contracts and employee supervision, go a long way to minimize lawsuits. However, despite the “best laid plans”, things happen.

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 A Trustee’s Responsibilities Administering a California Living Trust

Estate planning clients often have a lot of questions about their obligations as a trustee of their living trust. Where the acting trustee is also the creator or “grantor” of the trust, the trustee typically has plenary power to act on behalf of the trust and may amend or even revoke the trust in its entirety.

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 Letter of Intent: Is It Enforceable in California?

It often happens, when negotiating business deals, that one or both of the parties wants some assurance that their negotiations are serious and will ultimately result in a binding contract rather than a waste of valuable time.

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 Copyright Registration – A Prerequisite for Infringement Litigation

Registering copyrights is important in order to provide business owners and authors significant benefits, including statutory damages and reimbursement for attorneys’ fees, in the event someone infringes on their copyrights.

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 Statute of Limitations in California: Common Causes of Action

In civil matters, a statute of limitations is a law which places a deadline on the time frame in which a victim may pursue a claim against a wrongdoer. This “deadline” varies depending on the cause of action involved, but whatever the time limit, once the statute of limitations expires, the legal claim can no longer be pursued in a court of law.

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 Making Breach of Contract Actions Worthwhile: Liquidated Damage and Attorneys’ Fees Provisions

As business litigation attorneys, we sometimes have the unpleasant task of informing clients that their “breach of contract” case is not worth pursuing because the legal fees and costs to pursue legal action are likely to exceed the recoverable amount in their case.

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 Promissory Notes

Put simply, a promissory note is a written promise to pay a definite amount of money on specified date(s) or on demand. The primary purpose of a promissory note is to evidence a loan amount, interest rate, if any, and other terms on which a loan is to be repaid. Depending on the type of transaction involved, a promissory note may or may not accompany a security agreement, a deed of trust, or other contractual documents.

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 Fraudulent Inducement of Employment Contract in California

California law in regard to fraudulent inducement of employment, a situation in which an employer is alleged to have made false statements to a prospective employee for the purpose of inducing the candidate to accept the employer’s job offer. It also explores the remedies available to an employee against an employer where the employee suffers injury as a result of an employer’s alleged fraudulent inducement.

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 Starting a Business in California? Read This First

It is no secret that nine out of ten start-ups fail—that’s a full 90% of businesses that do not become profitable or are derailed for one reason or another. So what can you, as a prospective business owner, do to ensure you are one of the success stories?

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 Trademark Maintenance: How Do I Maintain a Registration?

A Trademark is a Living Asset. If you have a registered trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”), you have taken a very important step in protecting your businesses’ brand. However, what happens after you receive that registration? Do you own your trademark forever? Not exactly. Once you have obtained a federal trademark registration, you must take certain steps to maintain the registration or you risk having it canceled by the USPTO.

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 California Minimum Wage 2016

Economic Justice or Economic Devastation: What Does the Proposed Minimum Wage Hike to $15 an Hour Mean to Your Business?

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 The Constitutional Issues in Hulk Hogan v. Gawker

Gehres Law Group, P.C. discusses the landmark case of Hulk Hogan hulk hogan waiting for verdicts. Gawker, an online publishing company. Here, our lead civil litigation attorney, William J. Tucker, discusses and provides his opinion on the legal issues at stake in this very interesting case, which requires a balancing of the constitutional rights of Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press versus an individual’s right to privacy.

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 Remedies for Cybersquatting

Have you ever noticed that when a person or business name becomes popular or well-known, there’s often an unrelated third party prepared to park or register website domains in the name of that person or business? In many such cases, the third party’s objective involves making an easy profit by holding the domains “hostage” until the rightful owner of the name or mark is willing to pay a premium for the domains. This is called cybersquatting and it is illegal.

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 Hiring Licensed Contractors

Most of us have never hired someone to do construction work of any sort, so when the need arises to hire a contractor to make repairs or improvements on our residential or commercial property, we don’t know where to start. Beware: these are dangerous waters!

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 Protecting Trade Secrets Using Employment Agreements

Most California business owners know that a provision in an employment contract which purports to prevent a former employee from competing with the employer’s business is unenforceable in California. Under California law, there is a strong and clear policy favoring the free and unfettered rights of workers to find work where they can, using all their skills and experience to command the best wages they can find.

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 Trademark Protection

Most company’s trademarks are extremely valuable assets and represent a significant percentage of the company’s worth. Brand recognition creates customer goodwill and promotes customer satisfaction, which leads to increased sales. Because of this, it is critical to maintain protection of these intangible assets.

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 Letter of Intent to Purchase a Business

So, what are the benefits of using a letter of intent when purchasing a business? This article explores that question and provides practical tips for both buyers and sellers in the context of a private sale.

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 Docking Employee Pay for Rest Periods in California

As with so many legal issues, a determination as to when it is legally permissible to “dock” an employee’s pay for rest periods requires knowledge of the law and an analysis of the particular circumstances. This article highlights circumstances in which docking employee pay for rest periods in California is appropriate, as well as instances when it is unlawful.

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 Avoiding Ownership Disputes

Many clients contact business litigation attorneys when it is too late to avoid a dispute. When that happens, the costs and stress of litigation can mount. Here are some relatively simple and cost-effective measures to help you avoid an ownership dispute down the road.

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 California Wage Statement Requirements

The California Labor Code and the Orders promulgated by the Industrial Wage Commission impose various wage and hour requirements on employers for the benefit of their employees. As pointed out by our employment law attorneys, below, employers are well-advised to follow legal requirements in order to avoid potentially devastating penalties which may be assessed against them.

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 Breach of Fiduciary Duty

Introduction: When People You Have a Right to Trust Cheat You Ours is a world of contractual relationships, written and oral. We hire people to help us, and we hire people to act on our behalf. We enter into business associations, like becoming partners and shareholders of partnerships and corporations.

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 Are Salaried Employees in California Entitled to Overtime Pay?

The short answer to this question is “sometimes” regarding California state law on the subject of exempt versus non-exempt status of employees. However, before making decisions concerning the status of an employee, and whether to pay an employee a salary, or instead by the hour, an employer should consult with an employment law attorney who handles wage and hour issues.

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 Fraud Claims in Business Contract Disputes

Few things are more important to a business, small or large, than its contracts. Business law, to a large extent, IS contract law. But in business litigation, when parties are often fighting over failed contracts, contract law has a handmaiden, and her name is “Fraud”. Experienced business litigation lawyers know that, when suing for compensation for breach of contract, the addition of fraud claims can make their client’s case much stronger. The following fact scenario will help illustrate:

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 FLSA: Bonuses and Calculating Overtime Pay

There are many nuances in the FLSA on which many employers are not well versed, violations of which can lead to very significant penalties. This articles speaks specifically to the FLSA: Bonuses and Calculating Overtime Pay to help employers avoid such penalties.

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 Estate Planning: Choosing Per Stirpes or Per Capita Distributions

“Per Stirpes” literally means “by roots or stocks; by representation” and is used interchangeably with “right of representation” by estate planning attorneys when referring to a particular method for distributing assets of a decedent. Another common method for distributing assets is referred to as “per capita”. Using ther method, each member of the same generation of a decedent will receive an equal share of the decedent’s estate.

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 Benefits of a Financial Power of Attorney

Many of our estate planning clients have heard about a Financial Power of Attorney but are not clear as to why they should have one or how they might benefit from having this legal document. At the outset, it is important to consider, “Who takes care of my financial interests if I become incapacitated and unable to handle my own financial affairs?”

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 Calculating Overtime for Non-Exempt Salaried Employees in California

Most employers are aware that their “non-exempt” employees must be paid no less than the minimum wage prescribed by federal and/or state wage and hours laws. It is less commonly known that some salaried employees must also be paid overtime.

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 Bulk Sales Law for California Asset Sales

While many states have repealed their bulk sales laws, California’s Bulk Sales Law remains in full force and effect. The primary stated purpose of this law is to protect buyers and creditors following the purchase of more than half of a business’s assets. If a buyer makes a bulk sale purchase but does not adhere to the requirements set out in the bulk sales law, the buyer will typically remain liable to the seller’s creditors.

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 Filing a Lawsuit to Secure a Prompt & Enforceable Settlement

While it’s true that litigation can be an extremely expensive means of dispute resolution, and that prompt, voluntary settlements are almost always preferable to extended litigation, it is also true, paradoxically, that filing a lawsuit can be the best way to settle a dispute promptly and effectively. This is so for two reasons.

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 How to Reduce Your Litigation Costs

It is never a happy circumstance when a business gets involved in a lawsuit. As most business owners know, even when they have a strong case, litigation will likely be expensive, time-consuming, stressful and uncertain. But it is important to understand that by creating and preserving evidence for your business litigation attorney, you can greatly improve your chances of success and reduce your litigation costs.

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 California’s Anti-SLAPP Laws Increase Risk when Suing Based on Consumer Complaints

California anti-SLAPP laws are are designed to protect the public right to petition and free speech in matters of public interest and concern, including in connection with lawsuits, legislation, in public forums and discussions, and generally in matters of public interest. Where anti-SLAPP law applies, however, it can spell disaster for a plaintiff who is found to have filed a contravening lawsuit as illustrated by the example below.

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