Digital Media: YouTube, Demonitization and the “Adpocalypse”

In the past ten years, social media platforms are the biggest growth story in the world. Controversy usually follows success.  Ask any big business or celebrity.  Social media platforms like YouTube have both.  Twenty years ago scandals played out in supermarket tabloids; now they play out online.  Grainy images and suspiciously unbelievable headlines about Princess Diana and Madonna in the Enquirer have given way to streaming HD video documenting the idiocy of Jake and Logan Paul and the off-color

Decision Two: Sovereign Acts, Agency Deference and Contract Disputes

A second key government contract case decided in 2017 involved court agency deference to an agency’s interpretation of its own regulations. The case decided a subcontractor’s Request for an Equitable Adjustment (REA) springing from what the subcontractor argued was a change in government regulation and policy. The case, Garco Construction Inc. v. Secretary of the Army (ASBCA 57796,15-1 BCA ¶ 36,135, motion for recon. denied, 16-1 BCA ¶ 36,278, aff’d, Garco Constr., Inc. v. Sec’y of the Army, 856 F.3d 938 (2017), petition

Seven Mistakes You’re Likely to Make When Selling Your Business

You haven’t thought enough about how you’re getting paid. Business owners almost always have an idea what their business is worth, and it’s usually based on some formula they’ve either heard about or developed on their own over the years.  What owners often fail to consider is how dramatically that price can differ based on the means of payment.  An all cash at closing sale should bring a different price than, for instance, an installment sale over a term of years, or payment

Six Important 2017 Government Contracting Decisions

The next six newsletters will contain articles regarding important government contracting decisions from 2017. The articles will include a review of the following: Technology Systems, Inc., ASBCA No. 59577, 17-1 BCA ¶ 36,631 (the DCAA disallowed expenses following an audit); Garco Construction, Inc. v. Secretary of the Army, 856 F. 3d 938 (Fed Cir 2017) (involving access to a military facility where the contract was to be performed); United States ex rel. Harman v. Trinity Industries, Inc., 872 F.3d 645 (5th

New Workplace Safety Exam Rule

The Long and Winding Road to the New Workplace Safety Exam Rule for M/NM You would have to be living under a rock to not have heard about the changes instituted to the workplace exam rule 30 C.F.R. § 56.18002/57.18002. The new rule states: Examination of working places. (a) A competent person designated by the operator shall examine each working place at least once each shift for conditions which may adversely affect safety or health. The operator shall promptly initiate appropriate

Are Incontestable Trademarks Contestable?

REQUEST A CONSULTATION A long-running trademark dispute between the City of Portland and a craft brewery within that city, OldTown Brewery, is over, according to an announcement by theOregon Brewers Guild. Old Town Brewery, the owner of aregistered federal trademark since 2012, had been defending its registration against the City of Portland for two years. The fight has been over the city’s application for a trademark that includes a leaping stag. Old Town received a federal registration for the stag

2017 Decision 1: DCAA Audits – Unapproved Subs and Unallowable Costs

Many clients have Department of Defense contracts and are subject to Defense Contracting Auditing Agency (DCAA) audits of incurred costs in accordance with FAR 52.216-7, “Allowable Cost and Payment.” An important 2017, 61-page decision by the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA) addressed the following major government contracting issues: Overhead rates and supporting documentation; DCAA’s ability to change positions before the six-year statute of limitations expires; Depreciation; Bonuses; Accrued Costs crossing fiscal years; and, Unapproved subcontractor costs. The case was

Holdbacks When You Buy

REQUEST A CONSULTATION What is a “holdback” and how can it help We’ve all bought something that didn’t live up to our expectations.  When it’s something small, we may grumble about it for a moment or two, and move on with our lives.  When you’re buying a business, your financial life may hang in the balance.  Understanding your rights if you don’t get the business you were promised, or better yet, having an effective remedy, is critically important. In

Net Neutrality’s End and What it Means to You

Learn More About Us The End of “Net Neutrality”:  What to Expect as a Consumer and Business Owner Nearly every teenager spends a fair amount of time glued to YouTube, and my two sons are no different.  As the debate over net neutrality unfolded, my sons relayed to me that nearly every YouTube personality they watch made the repeal of the Obama-era “net neutrality” regulations sound like the end of the world.  If it’s a big topic online, my

U.S. Law Dictates Spousal Support from Retirement Pay

Set Up an Appointment with one of our Attorneys In the recent US Supreme Court case of Howell v. Howell, 137 S.Ct. 1400 (2017), it was held that a state court may not order a veteran to pay more spousal support for the loss in the divorced spouse’s portion of the veteran’s retirement pay caused by the veteran’s waiver of retirement pay to receive service-related disability benefits. See the news report here. Background: Federal Law Preempts Unless Congress Says Otherwise Because the