For small businesses, exporting can pave a path of expansion and growth. Starting up may seem daunting, but with the rise of the Internet and enhanced trade rules it is now easier than ever to become a successful seller abroad. A new Export Program Guide offers support and assistance for new exporters, or those thinking of their overseas operations. The 2009 edition of the Export Programs Guide features over 100 federal programs that offer counseling and assistance to current exporters and businesses looking to develop internationally....
For almost every risk your business faces, there is an insurance policy that will cover it. But what's required and what isn't? When it comes to business insurance, it's important to cover all you bases. Your business must comply with all employer insurance requirements but that doesn't mean policies that aren't required are any less important. Check out this quick guide for a better understanding of business insurance requirements. What's Required? Workers' Compensation Insurance covers the medical costs,...
Heading to court to resolve business conflicts can be costly, time consuming, and even damage your business's reputation. If you're facing disputes with an employee, customer, vendor, or partner, you have conflict resolution options beyond litigation. Alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, is a popular method of settling differences through arbitration or mediation. Depending on the severity of your situation, you may choose to consult a small business lawyer and proceed through the courts or go with one of the alternative options...
If you're starting a food-based home business, you have several options when it comes to the food preparations. Check out this quick guide to help you navigate the laws on commercial kitchens, co-packing arrangements, and home kitchen conversions. Why can't I prepare my food products in my home kitchen? Food preparation laws vary from state to state. In most states, it is illegal to prepare any food or beverage intended to be sold to the public in your home kitchen. For specific information on laws and regulations in your area...
As an employer, you have a responsibility to maintain a safe work environment, but accidents can happen even in the safest of workplaces. If one of your employees becomes injured on the job, do you have a plan? For employers, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OSHA) ensures that every working man and woman in the nation has safe and healthful working conditions. Observe both federal and state safety regulations. Many states have laws that go beyond the federal standards. Ensure that all...
One of the first steps of starting a business is determining what business structure is right for you. If you're not going in as a sole proprietor, a business partnership is a popular option. A business partnership is like a marriage - it takes a lot of hard work to keep it together, but if done correctly, can be very rewarding. Follow this quick guide for tips on how to keep your partnership healthy and what your options are if things take a turn for the worse. Before you enter into a business partnership... ...know who you're getting...
If you live in a planned residential neighborhood or complex, your business activities may be restricted to your Homeowners' Association Covenants (HOA), Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&R) rules. CC&Rs are designed to protect the community's collective property value by prohibiting undesirable activities. Common CC&R rules enforce particular paint colors, landscaping arrangements, or ban the installation of satellite devices - but they can also have a serious impact on your home-based business. Quick facts...
Are you thinking of taking your business public? "Going public" can be a very complex process and shouldn't be rushed into. Many businesses consider going public as a means to raise additional capital. While this is possible, it's much more complicated than that. Before you decide to attempt the transition, check out this quick guide to understand the who, what, where, when, and why of going public. Who Many businesses, from start-ups to established companies, may consider becoming a public company. The most important thing...
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), a 'tipped employee' is someone in an occupation in which he or she customarily and regularly receives more than $30 per month in tips. An employer of a tipped employee is only required to pay $2.13 per hour in direct wages if that amount, combined with the tips received, equals the federal minimum wage. Many states, however, require higher direct wage amounts for tipped employees. Find out more about your state's minimum wage law. Tip Credits Employers in some states can take what is known as a '...
Online businesses have become extremely popular in that last few years. While many steps of starting an online business are the same as those for a traditional business, several additional requirements are necessary to create your website. To understand the basics of starting your website, you must understand what a domain name is, how to select one, and how to register it. What is a domain name? A domain name is the web address of your online business. For example, Business.gov is the domain name of the U.S. government's business...
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