Taking your small business global can be exciting. But before you venture into international trade, do you know how to protect your intellectual property rights? For example, how do you protect and enforce your trademark, copyrights, and patents overseas? What about piracy? Where can you find help? Industry estimates of the cost of such theft range from $250 billion or to 750,000 jobs per year. These threats to ongoing invention and innovation make it important to consider securing intellectual property protection, whether you're a major...
Despite the current state of the economy, not all industries are struggling. In fact, some industries are experiencing significant growth - the alternative healthcare business is one of them. From chiropractors to naturopaths and acupuncturists, alternative treatments are gaining wider acceptance from both the public and insurance companies alike. Writing in SmallBizTrends recently, Rieva Lesonsky, pinpointed alternative providers as one of a few growth industries to watch in the coming years. According to Lesonsky, the...
Are you a small business owner interested in becoming certified in the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 8(a) Business Development program? If your answer is “yes” to the following questions, then you may be eligible for the program. Ask yourself: Am I a small business according to SBA’s size standards? Is my business 51 percent owned by one or more individuals who qualify as socially and economically disadvantaged and are U.S. citizens? Is my business controlled, managed and operated by one or more...
Being active on public social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter in addition to your own business blog, is almost an essential part of any business marketing toolkit. These tools can have enormous benefits, but they also have their dangers. For example, some businesses jump on social networking sites only to discover that someone has already registered their company or product names on Facebook and Twitter and is misrepresenting their brand as a consequence. Likewise someone might be out there reproducing your copyrighted...
While starting and growing a business can be challenging, one area in which the market is currently working in the business owners’ favor is in the glut of available commercial real estate. If your business is new or simply in need of more space, the abundance of choice and favorable market conditions for potential tenants can prove an enticing prospect for budding entrepreneurs and small business owners. However, even in a buyer’s market, negotiating a commercial lease is a daunting and complex process that requires research and...
Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week 2011 By Tiffani S. Clements Are you a minority-business owner looking to grow your business? Are you seeking to, network with other minority businesses? Do you desire to become certified as a minority-owned business and get a piece of the more than $400 billion federal contracting pie? If the answer to any of these questions is: “Yes, “the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has great news for you! On September 27-30, the SBA will partner with the Department of Commerce’s...
Congress has set goals to help woman-owned small businesses (WOSBs) gain their share of the federal contracting market. However, without a specific set-aside contract program for WOSBs, such as those in place for small disadvantaged businesses (e.g., the 8(a) program), service-disabled veterans and historically underutilized business zones (HUBZone), WOSBs only received 4% of the $400+ billion contracts awarded annually well shy of the 5% statutory goal. In an effort to address this shortfall and create a more level contracting playing field...
As a small business it’s critical that you protect your assets and your interests with a wide array of business insurance options, but what about your business liability? Liability insurance protects you against injuries and damages suffered by a third party. It essentially pays for the obligations that you may incur should someone get hurt while on your property or when there are property damages or injuries caused by you or your employees. Liability insurance will cover the cost of your defense and any settlement or award. ...
Do you offer an employer-sponsored 401(k) plan? Do your employees think the plan is free? Are you aware of your obligation for assessing and communicating information about fees to your employees? It’s a valid question given that more than 75 percent of employees who sign up for 401(k) plans are unaware of the administration, investment and service fees associated with their plan. The problem for you, as an employer, is that the law makes you responsible for acting on behalf of your employees when it comes to administering the 401(k)...
Today's Business Law Advisor is a guest post by Diana Zeitzer, Communications Director, Disability.gov Twenty-one years ago, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law. Yet, many small business owners still have questions about what the ADA is and the protections it offers individuals with disabilities. The ADA is a federal civil rights law that prohibits the exclusion of people with disabilities from everyday activities such as buying groceries from a store, seeing a movie in a theater or dining at a restaurant...
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