Congrats! You've survived your first week of summer weather in the Pacific Northwest. If you're like me though, 90+ temperatures mean you're actually spending more time inside, mooching off whoever is wise enough to pay for air conditioning. Though the winter is where construction defects become the most apparent, the hot summer months can be just as revealing.
One of the most widely used arguments for recreational marijuana legalization is now being challenged as violation of federal law. A lawsuit recently filed in Washington asks whether Washington State can legally tax an activity that is illegal under federal law.
Have you noticed that Oregon is changing? In the metro areas anyway, the apparent influx of people to Oregon in recent years has seemingly changed everything from the landscape to the traffic. But change isn't always a bad thing, especially for local rental and construction industries.
Sometimes big cities don't seem like the most welcoming places. In the Pacific Northwest, however, our cities offer much of the big city accessibility while maintaining a small-town quality of life. It turns out those welcoming qualities extend to small businesses, where both Portland and Seattle were recently rated among the top cities in the country for thriving small business.
A few weeks ago we wrote about local moratoriums on medical marijuana sales in Oregon. As with Washington's recreational marijuana regulations, cities in Oregon were given the choice to enact local one-year bans on medical marijuana dispensaries. As the deadline to enact the bans passed yesterday, Oregon's resistance to medical marijuana became clear. More than 150 cities and counties decided to enact the bans. Though some chose to ban the dispensaries reluctantly, others were firm in their opposition, even claiming the moratoriums do not go far enough.
Generally, it's safe to assume when someone does work on a construction project, that person will expect to be paid. How soon that obligation to pay arises, however, is likely determined by the contract between the parties. In some cases, when it comes to a prime contractor paying its subcontractors, that obligation might never arise.
What's the harm in a little white lie? Many of us are trained to tell them as a way to minimize harm, distress or delay. In the context of property sales contracts, however, any lie - big or small - can result in enormous liability.
As we've discussed before, the WARN Act generally requires large-scale employers to notify workers of any mass layoffs or plant closures 60 days before the event occurs. We've also discussed some circumstances, such as unforeseeable business events, or dire financial hardship, in which the Act's requirements are diminished. When a large-scale business is sold, however, when and to whom the Act applies can be tricky to determine.
It's generally safe to assume people intend to finish what they've started. When parties don't see a project to completion, however, contract law will usually provide remedies. But what if that nonperformance is the result of matters beyond the parties' control? In that case, construction contracts only operate to bail out a nonperforming party if they contain a "force majeure" or similar clause.
If you speak multiple languages you're probably familiar with the expression 'if you don't use it, you'll lose it.' My lack of Spanish speaking skills despite early immersion is a testament to that expression's truth. For owners of trademarks, the adage also holds true. A trademark that not is not in continuous use by its owner can be considered abandoned, and no longer given protection by the law.