Talks of harassment, stalking, or restraining orders seem the stuff of domestic abuse cases. But businesses, or at least business owners, are not immune to those laws, and good business attorneys will maintain sufficient familiarity with those concepts and the procedures implementing them.
Harassment, after all, is simply conduct causing emotional distress and for which there is no legitimate purpose. Stalking consists of multiple instances of harassment. There is no requirement in the law that a domestic relationship exists (though there are specific procedures in place to protect victims of domestic violence).
And so it came to be that two shop owners came to quite abhor each other as conflict followed conflict over insufficient parking in the strip mall they shared. Each accused the other’s customers of stealing their spots. It came to a Florida appellate court deciding whether one owner’s behavior toward the other quite came to the level of stalking.
Small businesses have a nearly infinite diversity of needs and priorities. Legal disputes in which they may become involved likewise cover a vast area. Their lawyers must keep up.