For now, it will remain a cloud on title. The law regarding mechanics liens are very detailed, and require strict compliance in order to be valid. If it is valid, you can still defend based upon the complaints that you articulated. Your options are to sue them to quiet title (and for the poor workmanship) or wait for them to sue to enforce their lien, and defend (and counterclaim) on the same grounds. The contractor must file suite within 2 years from the completion of the work, or the lien...
If and when you do decide to form an entity through which to conduct your business, consider a corporation with an IRS subchapter s election. For a simple structure like the one that you have described, an s-corporation is less expensive to organize and maintain than an LLC, and offers the same flow-through taxation of a partnerships or LLC.
In the absence of a good faith dispute as to whether he, in fact, owes you the money, your trainer's trainers attempt to condition the return of your $385 on new conditions likely NOT enforceable even if you do sign so as to get your money back.
If he is competing with the business, you can also bring an action derivatively on behalf of the company to get damages (which would go to the company, not you personally) and/or to have company dissolved. Courts often will order the corporation to reimburse litigant for fees incurred on its behalf.
You can manage the credit risk associated with any tenant by: 1) requiring advance payment of final month(s) of lease term; 2) requiring large security deposit; and/or 3) requiring a guarantor of all financial obligations, including liability for holdover tenancy.
Actually, although you could argue that the 1/2 off certificate was offered to you as part of a settlement of a bona fide dispute (accord and satisfaction) over the quality of your accomodations, there simply isnt enough at stake to make a lawsuit a worth while undertaking.
It depends. First, you have to determine what your contract with Company A says about tuition reimbursement if you are terminated. If Company A was entitled to reimbursement, there are two ways that Company B could try to collect. If Company B assumed your existing contract, then it has the right to enforce its terms in its own name. Or Company B may also have purchased all of the claims that Company A had at the time of the transaction, including claims against employees.
The inactive status of the LLC will not impact the LLC's liability to you (or your company) and it may give you rights to pursue claims against the member who purports to act on behalf of an entity that is not in good standing (and might, therefore, be deemed to have acted in his/her own name).