What to Know About Business Law Before Starting a Business

What to Know About Business Law Before Starting a Business

Knowledge is power, and for small businesses, knowing business law can help protect them from expensive lawsuits or fines. If you plan on starting a small business, take the time to familiarize yourself with the relevant local, state, and federal laws before getting off the ground. This way, you’ll avoid issues that could potentially ruin your business.

Trademark Laws

You can avoid any legal issues by ensuring you are not breaking any trademark laws from the get-go. To initiate your business, you’ll have to register a name and, oftentimes, a logo. As you brainstorm potential ideas, make sure you check your secretary of state’s website and see if any business is using that name or image. The rule is that you cannot use the name of another company that works in the same industry you intend to do business in. Otherwise, that business has the right to send you a cease and desist letter or file a lawsuit against you. Another way to protect yourself is by filing a DBA form.

Tax Laws

Taxes, especially for small businesses, can easily become convoluted and stressful since filing your taxes incorrectly can have serious repercussions. It may be in your best interest to hire an accountant or use a robust online tax service to walk you through each step. The relevant tax laws change depending on your business structure. For example, a sole proprietorship will have different requirements than an LLC or a corporation. Such as filing quarterly taxes rather than yearly. Your tax situation could also change depending on your state’s regulations.

Employment Laws

When it comes to employment, first make sure that you have figured out your tax situation and have an EIN number, which is required to hire staff. Then, you must ensure that you are following the legal requirements for hiring procedures, payroll, benefits, and safety. This also includes unemployment insurance and workers’ compensation insurance. The eligibility for certain types of insurance depends on the size and location of your business. So, consult an attorney to make sure you’re following all the necessary steps.

Business Permits

Business licenses can be for the local or state level, and in some cases, you may need explicit, written permission to conduct business in a certain area. For example, any restaurant will need to have a liquor license and the appropriate health permits to safely conduct business. You may even have to check in with your local land laws if you wish to construct or demolish any buildings on your property.

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