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Are gas station canopies taxed as real estate?

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Pennsylvania municipalities and school districts impose local property taxes on real estate owners. The Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, in an appeal by a gas station operator, has held that lighted canopies can be taxed as real estate. The…

Are digital signatures legally binding?

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Antonio Jobeem recently purchased a single-family home in New Orleans. It’s no big deal, except Antonio lives in Brazil and signed on the "E" line. On line deals can explode now that President Clinton signed the Electronic Signatures in Global…

Are customer identities a trade secret?

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When employees quit, can they take a customer list? Can they open a new business and target their marketing toward the customers of their former employer? What control does a business owner/employer have over records which reveal the identity…

Are credit card late payment fees based on the laws of the state where you reside, or the state where the bank who issued it is located?

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As part of the National Bank Act legislated over 100 years ago, Congress gave nationally chartered banks the power to charge their loan customers interest at the rate allowed by the laws of the state in which the banks are located. When a California…

Are conservators paid?

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Generally, a conservatorship allows the conservator to be paid for his or her services. The conservator is also entitled to attorney fees to seek legal advice. In addition, the court will require a conservator to purchase a type of insurance…

Are all investments obtained through a bank insured?

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Today's banks typically offer a diverse group of products, not all of which are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). Bank customers should resist the tendency to assume that all investments obtained through a bank are…

Am I required to disclose my knowledge of lead-based paint in the dwelling that I am selling?

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As the seller or lessor of a residential dwelling, you are required to disclose any lead-based paint defects known to you. Under the recent amendments of the Federal Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act, sellers, lessors, and their…

A Win for Contractors in the Area of Insurance Coverage

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A recent California Court of Appeal case strengthened contractors' rights to insurance coverage and specifically the right to have the insurance company pay the attorneys fees and court costs of a lawsuit. The decision is not at all surprising.…

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