On Demand Audio Audio Only

Where Did I Put that Piece of Paper?: Small Business Record Keeping in Texas (Audio Only)

Produced on July 12, 2018

Get started now

$299 / year - Access to this Course and 1,500+ Lawline courses


Course Information

Time 60 minutes
Difficulty Intermediate

Course Description

Let’s say you’ve got your first small business owner client, and he’s got his first set of problems for you to solve. The answers to his questions are easily obtained, so you tell your client: “Let’s go speak to HR, and let’s take a look at that employee’s file, the Employee Handbook, and your Corporate Notebook.” That’s when your client hits you with it: there is no HR department, there is just Nancy at the front desk who orders the coffee, paper towels, and answers the phone. There are no employee manuals, no employee handbooks, no employee files. And what, exactly, is a corporate record book?

Representing a small business client is worlds apart from representing a large corporate client. This program, led by attorney Elizabeth Alvarez, highlights the differences between record keeping and document retention in large and small companies. She will also discuss how to help your small business clients protect themselves from from liability by implementing record-keeping systems that are appropriate for their size, and manageable for their workforce. These systems include:

  • employee handbooks;
  • employee reviews;
  • employee personnel records;
  • corporate notebooks;
  • holding manager and/or member meetings or board of directors meetings;
  • keeping minute meetings and passing resolutions;
  • dealing with unemployment from a records perspective;
  • email and other correspondence retention policies; and
  • non-disclosure agreements.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Determine what kinds of records a client likely will not have and what they need
  2. Discuss how to help a client set up those basic systems of record-keeping which are appropriate for them
  3. Develop best practices for helping guide your client to protect themselves from liability

Credit Information

This course is pre-approved for CLE credit in the following states. If your state is not listed, contact support for more information on how to receive credit


Elizabeth Alvarez-Bingham

Law Office of Elizabeth Alvarez

Elizabeth Alvarez is an attorney from the Dallas-Fort worth Metroplex. As a graduate with honors of both Abilene Christian University and Pepperdine University School of Law, she would classify herself as a true Judge Jack Pope fellow. Elizabeth is the principal of The Law Office of Elizabeth Alvarez in Plano, Texas where her practice focuses on concierge in-house counsel for small businesses, statewide and county elections, and immigration. 

She has participated in immigration round-tables at many levels, including, but not limited to policy conversations on the immigration bill presented by Senator Marco Rubio and on an advisory panel with other attorneys, immigration activists, academics, and policy makers assembled by Texas State Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples. In particular during Staples’ last term to study how border security and immigration matters affect legal immigrants and citizens alike living in Texas border towns and beyond. Among the panel’s recommendations was the development of a new and innovative work visa program for agriculture workers and others to increase access to Employment Authorization Documents among the immigrant population. She’s taught CLEs in immigration and business association law and speaks regularly on responsible corporate governance and immigration at local colleges around the DFW Metroplex.

Elizabeth has spoken at the International Justice Mission International Prayer Conference in Uganda as well as worked with the International Justice Mission to address the needs of war-torn Ugandan displaced persons and victimized men, women, and children. She has worked with Restore International there to put on Judicial Workshops for the countries of the East African Union on International Law as it pertains to women, children, and victims of war-time violence. As a clerk for the Ugandan High Court and Supreme Court, she helped write an opinion that outlawed Female Genital Mutilation in Uganda. Elizabeth feels deeply that being an attorney gives people the unique ability to help those that cannot help themselves and finds her job incredibly rewarding. When she is not practicing law, she donates her time to the local Republican Party of Dallas County, where she has served as Chair of Community Engagement, Vice Chairman, and Victory Chair. Elizabeth and her husband Casey Bingham also volunteer their time to the Youth Ministry at their church, Greenville Oaks Church of Christ in Allen, Texas. She and her husband live in Spring Park, Texas, with their three cats Dagny, Taggart, and Luna.


Peggy F.

Very Practical information.

Ruth W.

The speaker spoke well but was extremely repetitive.

Load More