Gibson Law Group - January 2018

Check out our first newsletter of 2018!





(817) 769-4044


client’s heels, asking for payment that my client simply didn’t have yet. But, embarrassed about his mistake and under a ridiculous amount of stress, he QHJOHFWHGWRWHOOPHWKLV:KHQ,ZRXOGFDOOKLPWRoJXUHRXWZKDWZDVJRLQJ on, it was always “tomorrow, tomorrow.” Obviously, I knew something was amiss. So, I dialed him up and leveled with him. “Look,” I said, “We’re friends, right? I’ve known you long enough to know that something is up.” We set an appointment, and he came in to the RIoFHIRUDPHHWLQJ:KHQ,IRXQGRXWKH GHVVHQWLDOO\ERUURZHGIURP3HWHU WRSD\3DXOLWZDVFOHDUWKHHQWLUHVWUDWHJ\IRUWKHFDVHQHHGHGWRFKDQJH Luckily, he told me in time. I contacted the lawyer pushing for him to pay up, and we were able to set up an agreement to slow collection for a couple months while my client and I worked up a solution to the problem. Now, instead of the opposition forcing my client into bankruptcy, we bought time for him to collect the money and proceed in a way much more desirable to both parties. ,QWKHSDVW\HDU, YHVWHDGLO\EHHQUHVWUXFWXULQJWKHoUPWRDOORZP\VHOIPRUH time to have this vital communication with our clients. Recently, we brought Valerie Macalik on as our director of client relations, ensuring that, even as WKHoUPJURZVHYHU\VLQJOHFOLHQWJHWVWKHSHUVRQDODWWHQWLRQWKH\GHVHUYH In addition, I’ve stepped back a little as a practicing attorney, taking more RIDELJSLFWXUHYLHZRIWKHoUP7KLVZD\, PDEOHWRWDNHWKHWLPHWRUHDOO\ zero in on our clients’ pain points and keep everybody moving in the right direction. ,ILVDQ\WKLQJOLNHZHORRNIRUZDUGWRDQRWKHUIXOoOOLQJ\HDURI serving our clients and celebrating their growth and achievements. I welcome the opportunity and challenge that will bring and look forward to taking an even more personal approach to each and every case we take on.

Well 2018 is here, and I’m happy to say we all made it through what, for many, was one of the craziest

years in memory. Though my New Year’s resolution this year is “to make no further New Year’s resolutions,” I still admire those who are able to stick to their Jan. 1 goals and change their lives for the better. While I may not be on the resolution train, I still believe the beginning of a new year is the perfect time to step back and take stock of all that’s changed and think a little about the future. Over years of practicing law, I’ve learned that building a relationship with our clients is paramount in order to get them the best possible outcome. From day one with The Gibson Law Group, I knew I wanted to focus on opening lines of communication and understanding between us and the people we serve. It was vital to me that we did our best to truly understand the stories and struggles of our clients to better guide them through the complicated legal process. After all, clients aren’t simply there to pay our bills — they’re people, with all the complexities that come with that. If we treated them like nothing more than a number, not only would they have a much worse experience, but I’m certain we wouldn’t achieve anywhere near the desired RXWFRPHIRUWKHPDQGRXUoUPZRXOGVXIIHUDVDUHVXOW When you really know a client, it’s that much easier to fully invest yourself in their case and keep track of all their needs. For example, a couple months back, I had a client, a business owner, who got himself into a bit of a situation. Eager to complete a large transaction for his business, but lacking the funds, he’d taken money out of a different, incoming transaction to push LWWKURXJK1RZWKLVZRXOGKDYHEHHQoQHH[FHSWWKHPRQH\IURPWKDW other transaction was actually not yet available. As a result, all the numerous deals he was involved in went belly-up, and one of the sellers was on my






Running a business is hard enough without having to deal with technological problems. If your computer network is compromised, the results can be catastrophic. You might think that hackers and cybercriminals would never target a business as small as yours, but it happens all the time. You probably already know to be wary of dubious email attachments, but here are a few more tips to ensure you don’t end up the victim of an attack that sends your computers into a spiral. Update All the Time Updates to your operating system and security software might seem like a constant chore, but it’s the easiest defense against an attack. Antivirus software should be set to scan for malware after each update, and you should update your software whenever you’re prompted to do so. Even better, set your software to update automatically. Security patches are designed to counter the latest threats, so you shouldn’t wait to install them.

Use Backups Correctly If you do end up with compromised data, a backup is your best friend. Too many businesses don’t check that their backups actually work until WKH\QHHGWRUHO\RQWKHP(QVXUH\RXUEDFNHGêXSoOHVDUHLQJRRGRUGHU and keep one set of backups off-site. That way, if your entire network is under siege, you know you’ll make it out with minimal damage. Protect Your Wi-Fi ,I\RXZDQWWRSURYLGH:Lê)LWRFOLHQWVYLVLWLQJ\RXURIoFH\RXVKRXOG create a separate network for them. Both that network and your internal network should be protected by different passwords. When you let outside devices onto your network, you are at risk of being attacked through those devices.


Even if you are generally familiar with the federal laws prohibiting discrimination, you may be surprised by what conduct can be considered discriminatory. Essentially, any adverse employment decision that results from discrimination is prohibited, including job advertisements, hiring, discharge, compensation, terms, conditions, privileges of employment, promotions, tests or other selection criteria, HPSOR\HHEHQHoWVVRPHGUHVVFRGHVWUDLQLQJDQGZRUNDVVLJQPHQWV If you believe you have been improperly discriminated against, you JHQHUDOO\KDYHGD\V VL[PRQWKV WRoOHDFKDUJHZLWKWKH((2& 7KLVFKDUJHLVUHTXLUHGEHIRUHoOLQJDODZVXLWDJDLQVW\RXUHPSOR\HU Alternatively, if you are a business owner or employer, you have 30 days to respond to an employee’s charge, upon receiving notice from the EEOC. In either scenario, navigating the EEOC charge process and any subsequent litigation can be confusing and challenging. It’s vital you FRQVXOWDODZoUPOLNH7KH*LEVRQ/DZ*URXSDVVRRQDVSRVVLEOHIRU help evaluating your position and options.

In the diverse, contemporary business climate, every worker should be well-versed in workplace discrimination regulations. Treating every member of your team with a level of dignity and respect goes a long ZD\EXWHYHQZHOOêPHDQLQJERVVHVDQGFRêZRUNHUVFDQoQGWKHPVHOYHV in hot water when it comes to discrimination. In the United States, all claims of prohibited discrimination are enforced by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). 7KLVIHGHUDODJHQF\FRQWLQXHVWRH[SDQGDQGUHGHoQHWKHOHJDO understanding of discrimination, but generally, the EEOC investigates claims that involve the following: • Unfair treatment based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, or genetic information • Harassment by managers, co-workers, or others in the workplace based on the above factors • Denial of a request for a reasonable workplace accommodation because of an employee’s religious belief or disability • Retaliation resulting from a complaint about job discrimination or from employee assistance with a job discrimination investigation or lawsuit



(817) 769-4044


Educate Your Staff A staff member’s device can leave your system vulnerable, as well. If you are going to allow your staff to utilize company Wi-Fi for personal use, you need to educate them on safe browsing behavior. You may be skeptical of unsolicited text messages promising vacation deals, but if one person clicks, the whole network is at risk. Get a Firewall $UREXVWoUHZDOOLVWKHoUVWOLQHRIGHIHQVHDJDLQVWSU\LQJH\HV DQGKDFNHUV$oUHZDOORUURXWHUWKDWLQFOXGHVoUHZDOOIHDWXUHVLV inexpensive and easy to set up, and it will deter those seeking to break in. Think of it as a digital version of an alarm system. SUDOKU

We at The Gibson Law Group are always looking to enhance our ability to meet our clients’ needs. That is why we are excited to announce the opening of an Allegiance Title &RPSDQ\RIoFHLQ+XUVW7H[DV7KHGHFLVLRQWRODXQFK$OOHJLDQFH came from our commitment to serving our clients and our community by expanding the services available to them. The Gibson Law Group operates through a fee-attorney relationship with Allegiance Title Company. As a locally-owned title company, Allegiance Title employs some of the EHVWHVFURZRIoFHUVDQGUHDOHVWDWHDWWRUQH\VLQWKHUHJLRQ7KH\DUH experienced in title examination as well as commercial and residential real estate transactions. Allegiance’s services include the following:



• • &RPPHUFLDOUHoQDQFHDQGVDOHSXUFKDVH 5HVLGHQWLDOUHoQDQFHDQGVDOHSXUFKDVH • Investor transactions • Escrow services for mergers and acquisitions • In-house attorney services • In-house title insurance

Allegiance Title is committed to providing the exceptional customer service clients have come to expect from The Gibson Law Group. Led E\&DUOD:DUHDOLFHQVHGHVFURZRIoFHUZLWKPRUHWKDQ\HDUV RIH[SHULHQFHWKHFRPSDQ\SULGHVLWVHOIRQHIoFLHQWFORVXUHVDQG responsive, professional service. If you have real estate or escrow needs, contact Allegiance Title &RPSDQ\7KH\DUHFHQWUDOO\ORFDWHGLQ'):DW1RUZRRG'ULYH +XUVW7H[DV7KHWLWOHFRPSDQ\FDQEHUHDFKHGDW (817) 554-1778 .


(817) 769-4044

1550 NORWOOD DR., STE. 402 HURST, TEXAS 76054

GIBSONLAWGROUP.COM 1304 W. WALNUT HILL LN. STE. 212 IRVING, TX 75038 (817) 769-4044


(817) 554-1778

IN SIDE A Firm Founded on Personal Relationships The Internet Safety Tips That Could Save Your Business

Know This About Workplace Discrimination

Announcing Allegiance Title

How This Entrepreneur Turned $800 Into $12 Million

$12 MILLION COMPANY How One Entrepreneur Turned $800 Into a

level and create a web-based service, they didn’t hop on board. But like most successful businesspeople, Harris knew he had a good idea and stuck with it. With $800 in his bank account, Harris struck out on his own, going full weeks without leaving his apartment while he developed the business. Teaching himself web design and learning on the go, he was able to turn his idea into a multimillion-dollar company — all without taking out any loans. What can other entrepreneurs and even successful businesses learn from Amir Harris’ story? First of all, when obstacles appear, look at them as opportunities in disguise. You’ve discovered a consumer need that other businesses are QRWIXOoOOLQJVRIXOoOOLW6HFRQGO\EHOLHYHLQ\RXULGHDV3HRSOHZLOOWU\WR tell you they aren’t going to work, but if you know you have something worthwhile, follow through with it. Finally, don’t reinvent the wheel. Instead of buying buses, Harris partnered with existing bus companies and put their underutilized buses to use. He took an existing service and made it better. $WWKHHQGRIWKHGD\LI\RXIXOoOODPDUNHWQHHGDQGGRLWEHWWHUWKDQDQ\RQH else, you’re going to have the most popular lemonade stand on the block. Harris says, “We want to capture the market by providing better service.” Looks like it’s working.

When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, or so the saying goes. That’s exactly what Amir Harris did to turn a potential roadblock into a $12 million enterprise. Harris is the man behind Shofur, the bus chartering service currently favored by the likes of Facebook and the

NFL. But the business didn’t start out with those clients. It was a humble family endeavor founded by his uncle. Then the Democratic National Convention came to town, and the small business had nowhere near enough buses to PHHWWKHWUDQVSRUWDWLRQQHHGVRIWKHLQpX[RIYLVLWRUV+RZHYHU+DUULVVDZD silver lining. Instead of turning down what he knew would be a huge money- making opportunity, he called neighboring towns and even states and asked to borrow their buses. Thanks to Harris’ determination, his family’s company was able to make thousands of dollars off the event.

Like many entrepreneurs, Harris faced a lot of early pushback from friends and family. When he told them he wanted to take the company to the next




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