Law and Taxes

How Sole Proprietors are Taxed

As a sole proprietor you must report all business income or losses on your personal income tax return; the business itself is not taxed separately. (The IRS calls this “pass-through” taxation, because business profits pass through the business to be taxed on your personal tax return.) Here’s a brief overview of how to file and...

By Nolo |

Tax planning in a loss situation

As you develop your business plan, you’ll need to estimate the taxes you will owe. Simple assumption For planning purposes these are based on simple mathematics. Your estimated tax (usually in the profit and loss) is the product of multiplying pre-tax profits by your anticipated tax rate. This simple, powerful estimator is excellent in most...

By Tim Berry |

Seven Rules for Legal Advertising

Advertising is regulated by both federal and state law. Under the law, your ad is unlawful if it tends to mislead or deceive. This means the government doesn’t have to prove at an administrative hearing or in court that the ad actually fooled anyone — only that it had a deceptive quality. Your intentions don’t...

By Nolo |

How to Start a New Business as a Nonprofit Corporation

Forming a nonprofit corporation is much like creating a regular corporation, except that nonprofits have to take the extra steps of applying for tax-exempt status with the IRS and their state tax division. Here is what you need to do: Obtain nonprofit materials from your state’s corporate filing office. Choose an available business name that...

By Nolo |

In Patents I Trust — Not

Get your patents if you can, but don't think having a patent is real protection by itself. Plan on some legal expenses to defend it, and recognize that some patents are more defensible than others.

By Tim Berry |

Slippery Idea Ownership Updated

Your idea, is it? Last week I posted Get It In Writing about the Facebook idea ownership. Today in Who Founded Facebook? A New Claim Emerges the New York Times reports a new claim from Aaron Greenspan, who was a Harvard student at the time. Here’s the new originator of the Facebook idea: An e-mail...

By Tim Berry |

Slippery Idea Ownership: Get It In Writing

If you follow the Web you’ve probably seen coverage of a small unsuccessful company claiming that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg stole the idea from two brothers who were associated with him when he started. This is important to you not for who is right or wrong, or for what’s fair, but for what a great...

By Tim Berry |

Q & A: Licenses and Permits

Question: My family is interested in starting an office cleaning business. We are not going to be a franchise, and we have our own company assets (no need for a small business loan). We are in the midst of completing our business plan. And we already have licenses. I was just wondering how does the...

By Tim Berry |

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