Business & Commercial Litigation
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Breach of Contract
You see contracts every day—for example, in website user agreements, when you apply for a credit card, or when you buy real estate. What exactly is a contract? Contracts are legally binding agreements that describe the obligations that everyone who is a part of that agreement has. When someone breaks the agreement, a breach of contract has happened. But does that mean that you should sue to enforce the agreement or recover money? There are some common questions and considerations to all breach of contract actions, but the specific facts of your case are important. Our attorneys can walk you through the costs and benefits of a claim for breach of contract depending on the unique set of issues that you’re facing.
Sometimes, people or companies receive benefits that, by all rights, they are not entitled to. It can feel unfair if someone has received an unearned benefit at your expense. Rather than throwing up your hands and making the excuse that “this is just the way the world works,” it may be worth it to consider whether you have a legal claim for unjust enrichment.
What if there is no contract? Even if there is not a formal agreement or contract that governs a relationship between two parties, an equitable claim for unjust enrichment can arise at any time when one party profits at the expense of another party. More formally, Colorado law states that a claim for unjust enrichment arises when a party conferred a benefit on another to his or her detriment and that, under the circumstances, it would be unjust for the other person to keep that benefit.
Navigating a claim of unjust enrichment can be difficult because these types of benefits can be difficult to quantify or prove. The attorneys at Belzer Law can help you understand the complexities of your potential unjust enrichment claim by walking you through the facts of your case, assessing the strengths and weaknesses of your claim (or defenses), and strategizing together with you on the best way to achieve your goals.
Promises are made and broken every day. Although this is an unfortunate reality, there are times when broken promises can mean more than broken trust. Sometimes broken promises mean lost money or lost property. In these types of cases, it may be worth it to consider a legal claim for promissory estoppel.
Fundamentally, “promissory estoppel” means that the law provides a legal remedy for promises that were broken.
To pursue a claim for promissory estoppel, you must show that there was a clear promise, that you relied on that promise to your detriment, and that you were injured by relying on that promise. As with so much of litigation, you must be able to quantify your damages, which usually means quantifying them monetarily.
The attorneys at Belzer Law can walk you through the elements of a promissory estoppel claim, evaluate potential legal defenses or strengths of your claim, and help you craft a strategy to ensure that you’re made whole.
Creating a partnership and building a business can be exciting, invigorating, and fulfilling. Most business partnerships are governed by legal documents (for example, operating agreements and bylaws) that spell out how the business is supposed to operate and what role the partners will have in the business. The goal of these documents is to help partners deal with issues that may arise in the future.
But sometimes tensions arise between partners during their venture—whether over what their agreement means, one partner’s actions, how to run the business, or something else entirely. When partners are not able to resolve those issues, partnership disputes can arise.
Navigating a partnership dispute can be difficult, especially because so many partnerships require everyone to work together to make sure the business or venture succeeds. Oftentimes, partners do not anticipate certain disputes, so partnership agreements or operating agreements that govern these relationships fail to provide the procedure to resolve those specific disagreements. Moreover, because of the unique nature of a partnership, the partners owe one another special duties to look out for the best interest of not only the business but also one another (called a fiduciary duty).
Your business and your partnership deserve the best chance to succeed, and sometimes that means bringing in outside help to navigate the pitfalls of partnerships. The attorneys at Belzer Law are not only adept a litigating partnership disputes in court but are also excellent negotiators, creating lasting, amicable, and satisfying solutions to partnership disputes without requiring court involvement or outrageous expenses.
Breach of Fiduciary Duty
Sometimes a special legal relationship arises between two parties because of their relationship or one party’s job. This is called a “fiduciary” relationship. Some common fiduciary relationships are between a broker and a client or an attorney and a client. However, sometimes a fiduciary relationship arises between two people simply based on the nature of their relationship. In a fiduciary relationship, the fiduciary owes the other person a duty to look out for their best interests.
When someone breaches a fiduciary duty, the consequences can be devastating. Beyond resulting in a loss of trust, these types of breaches can often result in lasting monetary damages such that legal recourse is advisable.
To prevail on a claim for breach of fiduciary duty, you must establish that a fiduciary relationship existed, that a breach to the fiduciary relationship occurred, that the plaintiff suffered damages, and that the defendant’s breach of the fiduciary relationship was the cause of those damages. Navigating a claim for breach of fiduciary duty often requires legal counsel because of the special nature of these claims—and the need to procure experts to prove not only the existence of that special relationship but also that a breach of the fiduciary duty occurred.
Although this sounds straightforward, each element of this claim can be complicated to prove. Belzer Law understands not only the emotional toll that breaches in fiduciary relationships can cause but also the complex and nuanced law surrounding how Colorado courts have established fiduciary relationships and how they treat breaches to those relationships. Our attorneys can walk you through this claim as it applies to your case and help you to understand whether asserting a breach of fiduciary duty can accomplish your goals.
You’ve saved up money for months or years for that perfect home project. You hired a contractor. And now you have a poorly done renovation with the contractor threatening to file a lien on your house if you don’t pay.
Or perhaps you are a contractor who takes pride in your work, but after finishing a project, the homeowner is making up various excuses not to pay you. You have options you can pursue, including filing a mechanic’s lien, but you’re not sure what to do.
Either way, you have options ranging from demand letters to litigation (and everything in between). But there are various laws that govern contractors and home improvements—and procedures that must be strictly followed to protect your rights in these types of disputes.
The attorneys at Belzer Law are familiar with mechanic’s liens, contractor disputes, and related claims. If you find yourself in a situation like this, give our attorneys a call so that they can walk you through your options. We understand the importance of resolving these matters so that our clients—whether they are consumer or contractors—can go on with their lives.
Violation of Non-Compete Agreements
Non-compete agreements, also known as non-compete covenants, are contracts between an employer and an employee that are typically signed at the beginning of their business relationship. A non-compete agreement prohibits the employee from competing with the business directly or indirectly for a specific duration of time after their employment has ended. Many companies use non-compete agreements so that their employees can’t leave and work for a competitor. Although a contract like this can be legally binding, some aren’t enforceable or even valid.
If you violate a valid non-compete covenant that is in place, your former employer could pursue legal action against you. This could involve an injunction, lawsuit, monetary penalties as well as civil penalties.
If you violated your non-compete agreement and are facing legal action from your former employer, call Belzer Law as soon as possible to discuss your options. We can review the agreement to determine if it’s valid and enforceable. We will create a legal strategy to protect your rights during the case and try to reach a favorable outcome.
Likewise, if you are an employer whose former employee has violated their non-compete agreement, call Belzer Law to discuss your options. We can work with you on the best strategy to defend the non-compete agreement.
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