As a small business owner, your main priority is the success of your business. The last thing you want to receive is a court summons. Not only are lawsuits time-consuming, but they are expensive and could mean an end to a small business. The major reason small business owners receive lawsuits is due to ignorance. Unfortunately, ignorance can still be legally penalized.
We will be looking at three major laws you should know of if you are a small business owner.
Check the laws that should know
Apart from Tax Law, Trademark Law is another law you shouldn’t mess around with. In fact, it is the first law you should be familiar with because it will guide you in choosing a business name. A business name might sound good to you and may look unique because you painstakingly brainstormed before running with it. You may be surprised to learn that another business already uses the same name. Therefore, setting up your business with that name could land you in trouble, especially if the other person using the same business name had already registered the name. Business names are not the only thing that can be registered. Logos and mottos could be registered as well. It is important that you check the secretary of state website to see if the name, logo, and motto you intend to use are available.If you are not sure about the process,you can seek professional help locally or on online platforms.
One season that business owners dread the most is the tax season. It is not the most comfortable time for businesses, especially small ones because filing taxes incorrectly usually comes with serious ramifications. If there is anything you should take your time and read, it is tax laws and regulations. There is a need for you to familiarize yourself with both federal and state tax laws. It will guide you on the structure to choose when setting up your business. There is a difference between an S-corporation and a limited liability company because their taxes are different. As a small business owner, you can find all you need to know from the IRS about the types of business taxes that are applicable.
You should not begin hiring people without first knowing the employment laws that apply in your state. A lawyer is always your best bet when you need to find out accurate information on employment for your state of residence. Things like anti-discrimination, unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation, payroll, and withholding taxes are some of the things you should be aware of before employing new hands to avoid unnecessary lawsuits.
Some Important Acts to Note
Family and Medical Leave Act
As your business grows, you may consider employing more people to help manage it. Although we have mentioned employment law, you should also be aware of the rules and regulations that guide such employment. This is where you will find the Family and Medical Leave Act. It is part of federal law that protects employees and allows them to take leave without having to lose their jobs. No matter how much you may want an employee to keep working, if the employee just gave birth, is battling with a health ailment, or is caring for a loved one with a health challenge, this act protects the employee from losing his or her position in your establishment while they are away. You must allow such employees some time off with compensation to avoid getting a lawsuit. This guideline from the Department of Labor will assist you.
This law has to do with regulating commercial emails that solicit customer patronage with deceptive subject lines. It states that the subject line must convey precisely what is contained in the message. It must include the sender’s business location as well as a physical postal address. It must also have an option for the recipient to opt-out. Failure to abide by this act can amount to penalties to the tune of $42,530.
Truthful Advertising and Marketing
This is another federal law like CAN-SPAM Act and demands that all advertising and marketing efforts of a business must be truthful. Every advertisement claim must be backed up with substantial proof. It is even more paramount when the message is targeted at children or makes use of endorsements.
We hope that these laws and acts will guide you when you are starting your small business. It pays to go through and understand all the laws and acts that apply to you because ignorance is not an excuse in the eyes of the law.