Areas Of Practice Contracts


Contracts are formal agreements between people or legally-recognized business entities, such as corporations. They have been known worldwide for thousands of years, but have acquired greater significance in the sophistication of the modern age. Contracts are ideally intended to constitute a “meeting of the minds” of the contracting parties, and are expected to be for the mutual benefit of both parties. By setting forth the obligations and expected benefits of each party, they facilitate the exchange of goods and services. Smith & Shapiro has extensive experience with a variety of contracts found in typical transactions.

Commercial Leases

A big part of the success of a business is its location and customer access. However, a large number of small and medium-sized businesses do not own their offices, stores, or facilities, but lease them from commercial landlords. It is important for business tenants to get the best price, location, and amenities to be successful. It is important for the landllord to get the best rent, cover its costs of maintaining its property, and get stable rent-paying tenants. In this more sophisticated tug-of-war, form leases are frequently inadequate to address the issues unique to each party’s business. Having an attorney draft, examine, or negotiate a commercial lease can assist the landlord or the tenant to get the best deal possible. As with real estate purchase contracts, such assistance can help you identify what might be vital issues to the deal that are buried in the 30 plus pages of lease terms, including signage rights and expenses, availability of parking, and restrictions on certain business activities.


Business Transactions

Most commercial activity in America consists of transactions between various business entities, such as corporations, partnerships, and limited liability companies. The beauty of many business entities is that the owners can enjoy a level of protection from liability beyond their investment in the enterprise. Consequently, more people are willing to invest and put their capital to work. However, the downside is that business partners do not always agree. If you are co-owner of a business, it is helpful to have an attorney represent your interests, review your entity formation documents, and advise you on where you stand relative to your business partners. An attorney can also assist you in formulating an exit strategy and documenting a buy-out if differences between business partners cannot be resolved. Smith & Shapiro has extensive experience with business formation, modification, and dissolution, as well as the kind of business transactions that come along during the lifespan of a typical business.

Employment Contracts

Nevada is an “at-will” employment state, which means that other than in a few instances (such as illegal discrimination), an employer can fire his or her employees at any time. Likewise, an employee can quit anytime he or she wishes. However, there are exceptions to this general rule. Often with management positions, positions that benefit from stability and continuity, or other positions in which an employee is regarding as uniquely valuable, the employer and employee will enter into a written employment contract. Such contracts typically set forth the level of compensation and the expected services of the employee. However, such contracts may also contain obligations of confidentiality to protect the employer’s trade secrets, or restrictions on the employee for future competition with the employer which may extend past the date that the employment is terminated. It is helpful to have an attorney negotiate, draft, and examine an employment contract to ensure that the represented party, whether employer or employee, gets the best deal it can.

Transaction Attorney

James E. Shapiro, Esq. has extensive experience with the negotiation, creation, examination, and review of all forms of contracts, business and otherwise. Contact Smith & Shapiro at (702) 318-5033 or submit our online contact form. Smith & Shapiro is open Monday – Friday, 8:0 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at both our Las Vegas and Henderson locations.