The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s Chief Executive Joseph Conti appeared before the Pennsylvania Senate Law and Justice Committee this week to address its plan to modernize the Board’s operations. Ten proposals were offered to law makers as an effort to stave off privatization of the state’s Wine and Spirit stores. For more read: Pennsylvania Independent’s: Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Proposes Ten Ideas For Modernization
One of the real joys of the holiday season is the opportunity to extend a heartfelt thanks to all Pennsylvania and New Jersey wineries, wine and hospitality businesses for your continued business throughout the year. On behalf of the firm we’d like to wish each of you best wishes for peace and joy this holiday season. Here’s hoping you have a new year that’s filled with health, happiness and prosperity.
Have you suffered adverse consequences in your Pennsylvania restaurant, winery or hospitality business this year by being far too trusting? Did you rely on mutual trust by conducting your business strictly on the basis of a handshake? Perhaps you found yourself in the middle of an ugly verbal confrontations of “he said, she said “ telling the other party to ‘talk to the hand”?
If so, now might be the time to formalize your Pennsylvania restarurant, winery or hospitality business infrastructure by putting your future agreements in writing. Why? Because parties often forget the terms of their oral agreements. While oral agreements often exist, they can be difficult to prove and to enforce. A written contract will help you guard against confusion, misunderstandings and the forgetful mind as you go about your day to day business operations.
Whether you make agreements with your local suppliers for daily produce deliveries or your favorite caterer to reserve banquet room or tasting room space, a written contract is a sound business practice. Routinely, hospitality businesses often find it objectionable to draft contracts for every single business transaction. Oftentimes the cost of retaining a lawyer might appear to out way the benefits derived from memorializing mutual promises. In these instances you may want to alternatively consider having your attorney prepare form agreements that can be used multiple times and can prove to be cost effective. In the event of a dispute, having your written agreement for purchases, catering, or meeting space can be very beneficial.
The written agreement doesn’t have to be a complex document full of legal mumbo jumbo. It should be in plain english and contain certain essential provisions. Thus when promises between the two parties are not kept and contract obligations go un-fulfilled, you will be on stronger legal ground to pursue economic remedies for your losses.
For example, lets imagine that the local tour bus company in your area contracts with 40 of its customers to participate in a tasting at your winery or dinner at your restaurant. When the tour group arrives they find your establishment is unable to accommodate the prior reservation. Perhaps the tour bus company oversold the event. Your understanding was that you agreed to twenty customers not forty. The tour bus company because of the confusion and misunderstanding may now find itself in breach of its contract with its patrons. The tour bus company then pursues litigation against your establishment for failure to provide food and/or alcohol services to their customers. Do you see where this is headed? Hence the best way to avoid these circumstances is to get your agreements in writing.
If and when a disagreement arises, you won’t have the need to shout “talk to the hand”. Instead you can produce your written contract of what he said, she said that was intended to safeguard against any subsequent misunderstandings.
Your interests are now protected.
Its that time again folks! Wine Blogger Tom Wark at Fermentation has recently announced this year’s finalists for the 2010 American Wine Blogs. Its always interesting to see which social media wine bloggers are giving American media a run for its juice. Is your winery’s blog amongst this year’s nominees?
Go now and cast your vote. American Wine Blog Awards
The first Sommelier Challenge International Wine Competition was held recently in San Diego, California. Eleven sommeliers from the nation’s finest restaurants gathered to evaluate wines from nine countries. Pennsylvania’s own Crossing Vineyards and Winery, a Bucks County winery in Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania earned the Platinum, Gold and Silver medals.
Congratulations to Pennsylvania’s own Crossing Vineyards and Winery! For more information: Crossing Vineyards Wines Earn Three Medals At International Sommelier Challenge.
Have you identified information in your winery, wine, or hospitality business that is valuable as a trade secret? Perhaps you have certain technologies, techniques, materials, innovations, inventions, customer lists or formulas that you need to protect? If so, what steps have you taken to protect the secrecy of your business’s confidential information?
A sensible way for you to maintain your business’s trade secrets and confidential information is through the use of a Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure Agreement. A Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure Agreement can be indispensable in helping you to protect your ideas, formulas, trade secrets, new business ventures, and key business information. A Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure Agreement is a written agreement executed by you and your key employees, suppliers, distributors, buyers, sellers or independent contractors who either help create or have access to your confidential information.
A Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure Agreement can be one-way (use is restricted by one-party) or it can be mutual (use is restricted by both parties). The parties contractually agree to protect the confidentiality of your business information against improper disclosure of information that is not generally known or in the public domain. The parties are legally bound to keep the information secret. If a disclosure of your confidential information is made, you may sue for damages or pursue a court order against the violator for future unauthorized disclosures.
Key elements of a Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure agreement include:
- defining the confidential information
- determining time frames to maintain confidentiality of the information
- determining the particular purpose for which the parties will disclose the confidential information
- agreement that the parties not disclose the information to third parties
- binding the heirs and assignees of the agreement.
It is important to limit access to such information to those persons in your business who need to know certain information in order to perform their duties. Thus you should take reasonable steps to store and secure your paper and electronic information.
What confidential information do you need to keep secret? Perhaps now is a good time to consider a Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure Agreement for your winery, wine or hospitality business.
Here’s What They’re Saying In The Media About Judy Young
Deborah J. Merritt, John Deaver Drinko/Baker & Hostetler Chair in Law, Ohio State University Moritz College of Law
As Guest Lecturer, the students found your wine and hospitality law practice area and story very inspirational. You are a very articulate, fluent speaker!”
Tom Wark Fermentation The Daily Wine Blog
A number of other blogs, some quite new and promising, speak to these issues and should be considered resources for those concerned with these issues. Judy Young, PWHL focuses on general compliance and legal issues aimed at aiding those working in the Pennsylvania marketplace. (click link to read the full article)
Cliff Tuttle Pittsburgh Legal Back Talk
Consider the case of Pennsylvania Lawyer Judy Young. In her website/blog, Pennsylvania Winery and Hospitality Lawyer.com, she lays claim to a singular brand. There is none like it.” (click link to read the full article)
Chuck Newton Third Wave Law
With the launch of Pennsylvania Winery & Hospitality Lawyer, Judy Young is well on her way. As she says, her “passion for the law just barely exceeds my passion for wine, vineyards and beautiful destinations”. (Click link to read the full article)
Stephanie Kimbro Virtual Law Technology
VLOTech is pleased to announce the opening of Pennsylvania Winery and Hospitality Lawyer, Judy M. Young’s, virtual law office. Focused on issues specific to the wine, vineyard and hospitality industries, Young’s practice provides a variety of different legal services to clients online. (Click link to read the full article).
Susan Cartier-Liebel Founder Solo Practice University
Judy personifies the entrepreneurial alwyer. She intuitively knows how to meet the needs of her clients. She understood the unique challenges of creating a practice in today’s difficult economy and overcame those hurdles by incorporating technology the right way into her practice. The right way is not losing the necessary (and best part) human interaction with her clients, who by all accounts love working with her. The best part – she is passionate about the wine and hospitality industries and this shines through in everything she does. If you are in the industries she serves, she is the go-to lawyer.
By using this website you understand and agree that there is no attorney-client relationship between you and our firm or any individual attorney. The materials and information on this site have been designed to provide you with general information regarding our firm, attorney, and types of legal services the firm provides and does not constitute legal advice or legal opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. Judy Young, Attorney at Law, assumes no liability for the interpretation and/or use of any information contained on this site. This site should not be used as an alternative to specific legal advice from a licensed attorney in your state based on the specific facts of your legal matter.
This site may contain links to other websites on the internet. Any such links on this site are provided solely to help you locate other internet resources of interest to you, and do not imply any endorsement or affiliation or association with any of those sites.
Not all legal matters take place in court. Many of your legal affairs are simply contracts and documents you need to refer to and review in your own offices or place of business.
I offer virtual law office services to make legal affairs a pleasant, comfortable and ultra-convenient experience.
A virtual law office saves you precious time by giving you access to all your legal documents through a secure online service. VLO encrypted technology ensures the ultimate in protection and security for sensitive information, and it allows you to review, upload and download your documents with complete confidence and peace of mind.
You’ll be able to quickly and easily manage your billing, business documents, invoicing and payments as well as forms and contracts with just a few simple clicks. You can access your virtual law office through any computer or smart phone.
Now that’s convenience!
I’m also absolutely committed to maintaining a strict standard of privacy for each of my clients, which means I have the best in information security to protect your online documents.
A virtual law office has a bonus benefit you’ll enjoy immediately: reduced expenses for top legal counsel. By lowering office overhead costs and offering in-person services, I save you time – and money.
To try the virtual law office right now, click here to log in and create your secure client profile. You’ll be benefiting from innovative solutions for your legal needs.
And you’ll make your winery, vineyard or hospitality business run more smoothly.
When you face a difficult legal or business issue, it’s very easy to feel uncertain, worried, and unsure of where to turn for help.
I’m on your side – and I can help.
Winery, vineyard and hospitality businesses should thrive, and working in this industry should be worry free. That’s why I keep my attention on the legal issues that you face on a daily basis, such as liquor liability laws and beverage distribution, to make sure you never feel a roadblock in your continued success.
Fully prepared to represent you in any legal situation or help you with legal counsel to understand the complexities of your business, I focus on issues specific to the wine, vineyard and hospitality industries. You benefit from full personal attention, understanding, and counsel you can understand, because I speak your language.
You’ll never feel helpless in the face of a legal issue again. I’ll be at your side.
Winery and Hospitality Law
As you operate your winery, vineyard or hospitality business, you’ll inevitably encounter contract agreements, disputes, and other legal issues.
My common-sense approach as a corporate law attorney means you always understand what’s happening and what comes next, even in the most complex issues. Your operations will be smooth from start to finish.
You benefit from winery, vineyard and hospitality law expertise, including:
- Contracts and agreements
- Contract disputes and complex negotiation
- Business formation/LLC start-ups
- Independent contracts
- Confidentiality agreements
- Consulting agreements
- Purchase Agreements/Distributorship agreements
- Trademark License Contracts/Copyright Agreements
- Insurance Risk Assessment
- Change in Ownership and Succession Planning
- Limited Winery Licensing and Restaurant Liquor Licensing
- Federal Alcohol Tobbaco Trade Bureau Regulatory Actions
- Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board Regulatory Actions
Enforcement and Compliance Defense
The wine, vineyard and hospitality industries are subject to complicated federal, state and local laws, with new ones cropping up daily. The success of your business depends on complying.
As your venture grows and develops, I ensure you have the right preventative measures in place for the future and represent you in case of dispute.
You benefit from enforcement and compliance defense, including:
- Regulatory agency representation
- Federal, state, and municipal compliance requirements
- Policy implementation
- Preventative measures
- Licensing and permitting, including retail satellite license and Pennsylvania liquor license
- Premise liability
Labor and Employment
The wine, vineyard and hospitality industries involve numerous employment issues, from simple non-disclosure agreements to business succession.
You’ll get the proper policies you need in place to protect your venture, and achieve the confidence that you comply with state and federal employment requirements, including:
- Non-compete/Non-solicitation agreements
- Executive compensation agreements
- Separation agreements
- Non-disclosure agreements
- Independent contractor agreements and seasonal labor
- Employment practices
- Alcohol, beverage and tobacco procedures
- Breach of contract claims
- Arbitration and mediation
In-House Counsel Service
Sometimes, you have questions that need fast answers or want to know what you should do in a specific situation. Now you can benefit from one person ready to respond to all your in-house counsel needs.
With individually tailored advice and solutions for a business that runs smoothly, you enjoy in-house counsel services that make sure you have the advice you need, when you need it, including:
- Legal services for start-ups
- Legal services for entrepreneur companies
- Legal services for small to mid-size businesses
- Legal services for family oriented businesses
- Business formation
- Contract drafting and review
- Licensing and Brand Strategy
Your winery, vineyard or hospitality business brand is critical to your philosophy, marketing, and ultimately your success. That means your brand needs protection, and you need legal counsel as you navigate business and regulatory issues.
Protect your brand identity and business assets through licensing and brand strategies, including:
- Brand and content licensing
- Draft and review of licensing agreements
- Website Audit Review
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Contact Judy Young
Attorney at Law
668 Stony Hill Road Suite 339
Yardley, Pennsylvania 19067
Or click here to go to our contact page.