Minority Entrepreneurs

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             I’ve been an independent media and public relation consultant for almost a year. As a first-time self-employed tax filer, what business deductions am I entitled to?

 

About the Author

         This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly
70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one
business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit
merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer

One of the most common business structures used to start a business is the sole proprietorship. But sole proprietorships/Doing Business As (DBAs) aren’t popular because they’re essential or even helpful—it’s because they’re simple to form. There’s no formal action required to start a sole proprietorship, and many people own them without even knowing it. For example, if you were to start building and selling rowboats out of your garage, you would be a sole proprietor. There is legally no distinction between the business and you, the owner. Sole proprietorships are formed automatically—all you need to do to form one is sell something. In many cities, states, and counties, you can register a Sole Proprietorship business name (aka: a DBA) for as little as $5. But with a sole proprietorship/DBA, you reap all the profits and you carry the weight of all your debts, losses, and liabilities. 

About the Author

Drake Forester, Chief Legal Strategiest - Northwest Registered AgentDrake Forester is the chief legal strategist at Northwest Registered Agent, LLC. Throughout his career, Drake has researched many complicated nonprofit compliance issues and provided whitepaper and publications for many leading nonprofit organizations in the United States.

After you’ve filed formation documents to create your business (i.e. Articles of Incorporation, Articles of Organization) and have gotten your paperwork back from the state, you’re ready to open your doors, right? Now what? 

There are a few more requirements you should consider before you are fully ready to operate:

Initial Reports:

There are a handful of states which require initial reports and tax forms to be filed, as opposed to waiting to file an annual report. These states and their requirements are as follows—

About the Author

Drake Forester, Chief Legal Strategiest - Northwest Registered AgentDrake Forester is the chief legal strategist at Northwest Registered Agent, LLC. Throughout his career, Drake has researched many complicated nonprofit compliance issues and provided whitepaper and publications for many leading nonprofit organizations in the United States.

A step-by-step checklist to incorporate your business—yourself 

Below, you’ll find a simple checklist with step-by-step instructions to help explain how to incorporate your business—yourself. Take a look:

Find a Name

About the Author

Drake Forester, Chief Legal Strategiest - Northwest Registered AgentDrake Forester is the chief legal strategist at Northwest Registered Agent, LLC. Throughout his career, Drake has researched many complicated nonprofit compliance issues and provided whitepaper and publications for many leading nonprofit organizations in the United States.

An Employer Identification Number, also known as an EIN or FEIN, is a 9-digit number that identifies your business with the IRS. It is basically your business’ social security number, and all businesses need one. The EIN helps the IRS track wages and identify your business tax account. 

Follow this handy checklist to get your EIN today:

EIN checklist if you have a Social Security Number:

 Go to IRS.gov and select “Apply for EIN Online

 Have this company information ready:

About the Author

Drake Forester, Chief Legal Strategiest - Northwest Registered AgentDrake Forester is the chief legal strategist at Northwest Registered Agent, LLC. Throughout his career, Drake has researched many complicated nonprofit compliance issues and provided whitepaper and publications for many leading nonprofit organizations in the United States.

Ask SCORE
          Our veterinary practice began doing online marketing, including social media, about six
months ago. We believe it’s having a positive impact, but would like to know how we can
accurately measure its effectiveness.  

About the Author

       This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly
70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one
business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit
merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer

SCORE Association

How SCORE Helped

Celebrating its 50th year anniversary in 2014, SCORE Association continues to successfully mentor business owners and is the parent organization for SCORE Minneapolis. 

Steve Strauss, founder of www.theselfemployed.com, makes the case for effective managerial skills as a tool for business success.

Thought LeaderQ: I have been hearing a lot about this seemingly new term “thought leader.” How does one become a thought leader, exactly? I have been in business quite a while and think that I have a unique expertise and so it would behoove me to be seen of as a ‘thought leader.’ But how do I get the word out?

Baxter

About the Author

Steve StraussSteven D. Strauss is a lawyer and writer and is one of the country's leading experts on small business as well as an international business speaker. The best-selling author of 17 books, his latest is the all-new 3rd ed. of The Small Business Bible. You can listen to his weekly podcast, Small Business Success Powered by Greatland, visit his new website for the self-employed, TheSelfEmployed, follow him on Twitter, and "like" TheSelfEmployed on Facebook. You can e-mail Steve at: sstrauss@mrallbiz.com. © Steven D. Strauss

Steve Strauss, founder of www.theselfemployed.com, makes the case for effective managerial skills as a tool for business success.

Q: I was wondering if you had any tips on how our business could be more entrepreneurial? We have been around for a long time, have about 25 employees, and so we are well past that creative, startup phase. Thank you.

Trisha

About the Author

Steve StraussSteven D. Strauss is a lawyer and writer and is one of the country's leading experts on small business as well as an international business speaker. The best-selling author of 17 books, his latest is the all-new 3rd ed. of The Small Business Bible. You can listen to his weekly podcast, Small Business Success Powered by Greatland, visit his new website for the self-employed, TheSelfEmployed, follow him on Twitter, and "like" TheSelfEmployed on Facebook. You can e-mail Steve at: sstrauss@mrallbiz.com. © Steven D. Strauss

Steve Strauss, founder of www.theselfemployed.com, makes the case for effective managerial skills as a tool for business success.

Q: Hi Steve – I have an idea for a business, but I also get that the startup landscape these days seems to be evolving rapidly – now it seems like it is all about social media and mobility and so on. That is not really my thing. So, do you think I can still make a go of it if my startup is more ‘old school’?

Vic

A:

Old school is old school for a reason: It usually has stood the test of time and works.

About the Author

Steve StraussSteven D. Strauss is a lawyer and writer and is one of the country's leading experts on small business as well as an international business speaker. The best-selling author of 17 books, his latest is the all-new 3rd ed. of The Small Business Bible. You can listen to his weekly podcast, Small Business Success Powered by Greatland, visit his new website for the self-employed, TheSelfEmployed, follow him on Twitter, and "like" TheSelfEmployed on Facebook. You can e-mail Steve at: sstrauss@mrallbiz.com. © Steven D. Strauss

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