4 Laws New Entrepreneurs Should be Acutely Aware of

Starting a new business is a very demanding but potentially extremely rewarding career move. You get to work for yourself and truly do what you love. But in order to have your best chances for long-term success, it's imperative you make an effort to understand various laws that new entrepreneurs should be acutely aware of.

1. The Fair Labor Standards Act

The Fair Labor Standards Act regulates all kinds of things in your business, from minimum wage to overtime rules. The Department of Labor has a handy site that walks you through the different aspects of the law and helps familiarize new entrepreneurs with it. There are many things the FLSA does NOT require, however, including but not limited to vacation, holiday, severance or sick pay, although those things may be mandated by state or local laws.

2. Business Licensure

To start a business, you need to be aware of any licenses you are required to have by federal, state or local law, as well as any other certification your profession might be required to have. For example, if you are opening a bar, you will need a liquor license. If you are working from your home in many municipalities, you will need a permit to do so legally. Depending on the type of business and under which jurisdiction you're setting it up, you might need general licensure to open a business at all.

3. Your Tax Responsibilities

Taxes for businesses are rather complicated, and you need to understand your tax obligations when starting a business to avoid getting slammed by a massive tax bill you cannot afford. For starters, physical products are generally subject to sales tax. If you're selling online, you still need to collect sales tax for purchases made in any state in which your business has a physical location.

Services provided generally do not need to be taxed, but always check. Finally, understand what percentage of your business income should be set aside to cover your taxes. If you make over a certain amount, you are required to pay estimated quarterly taxes as a business owner rather than just once a year.

4. Intellectual Property Laws

Most entrepreneurs need to be acutely aware of relevant intellectual property laws, including trademark, copyright and patent laws. If your company produces media or products of any kind, it's very important to understand your rights and the best ways to protect your intellectual property.

For example, a new design should likely be protected under patent law, while your company's logo should be registered as a trademark. Business-to-business collections is the way to collect on unpaid debt from another business that hasn't paid you for your product.

While you should be acutely aware of all the laws mentioned in this piece, do note that this can be no substitute for professional legal and financial advice based on your unique situation. As long as you make an effort to stay informed of any changes, get in touch with the right professional help and familiarize yourself with the law, your business will stand a much better chance of succeeding without issue.

About the author

Anica is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she's used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here. If you are interested in an online safety degree, Anica suggests you check out the programs offered by Eastern Kentucky University.


Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
This question is for preventing automated spam submissions.