An old quote that has been around a long time is one that many business people in North Carolina are likely to be familiar with. It goes, "A verbal contract isn't worth the paper it's written on." Another adage, slightly tangential but perhaps no less important, comes from the halls of journalism. It runs, "If your mother says she loves you, check it out."
Most everyone has probably heard of employment agreements that include a noncompete clause. They are intended to serve the legitimate purpose of protecting a company's proprietary information; its trade secrets if you will.
In North Carolina, businesses often get into disputes regarding contracts for construction and repair projects. Sometimes the dispute is between a government office and a contractor who has agreed to provide the requested construction or repairs. Business disputes under these circumstances are commonplace events that generally are settled out-of-court or prior to going to trial.
In a court ruling that is may eventually have an impact on North Carolina television viewers, the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah has issued an injunction shutting down the streaming services of Aereo in six states. The company contends that its service, which allows viewing of network television broadcasts on mobile devices, computers and televisions with a short delay after they are aired, does not violate federal copyright laws.
A relatively minor business dispute has received increased attention because it involves a political figure. Two North Carolina individuals have filed a civil action against Republican U.S. Senate candidate Greg Brannon, who was on the board of directors of Neogence Enterprises, a now-defunct technology corporation. The company's chief executive officer is also named as a defendant. The plaintiffs claim that the defendants misled them about the company's financial prospects when they were asked to invest. They are asking for the return of $250,000 plus court costs and attorneys' fees.
The United States Bankruptcy Court gave permission for a Fayetteville developer to begin conversion of the historic Prince Charles building downtown into condominiums and "micro" offices. The developer will be required to complete a feasibility study that will explain his plans to renovate the dilapidated landmark into 450-square-foot offices and small condominium spaces that will sell for under $100,000. The plans have been delayed by business disputes between the building's current New York owner, who is in bankruptcy, and the city, which has a lien on the property.
People in North Carolina of a certain age may remember the hit television series "L.A. Law." Nearly 20 years after that legal drama went off the air, one of its stars was back in court recently. Only he was not playing a lawyer on TV, he was the plaintiff in a real-life contract dispute with an advertising company that hired him to appear in its commercials.
A North Carolina contractor that was fired from a runway reconstruction project at an out-of-state airport has settled its financial dispute with the airport's overseers. Though the contractor once sought $2.5 million in damages, it has agreed to pay nearly $690,000 to end the matter.