Under a federal law that took effect on October 28, 2004, banks will have more leeway to process checks electronically, which means shorter or even nonexistent “float” times — the grace period between the time the check is written and when the money is debited from the account. The Check Clearing for the 21st Century […]

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Post image for How "Piercing the Corporate Veil" Pierces Your Pocketbook

Have you ever felt “forced” to do something you really don’t want to do? Attending a family function for your in-laws, contributing to a particular charity you don’t care about for a colleague, sitting through Wagner’s Ring Cycle (or a WWE wrestling match) for your significant other–all come to mind. Now imagine if you had […]

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Two (or more) people want to go into business together.  They’re holding hands (metaphorically speaking), ready to skip lightly down the path of shared entrepreneurship, when a legal questions arises:  what form of business should we choose? The short and obvious answer it:  it depends.  And the decision is a crucial one that should involve […]

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Copying contracts from the Internet is a bit like wearing your old cousin’s hand-me-down dresses . . . in order to walk into a bee’s nest (an incongruous image, I know): yes, you’re “covered,” but the style is outdated and they usually don’t fit you well. Plus, they won’t provide you with the protection you […]

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Post image for Why You Need to Form a Business Entity

Protect your assets by forming a business entity; it’s worth the cost. Some companies can cover many of their potential business risks with insurance, but in my opinion, if you’re going into business you should form a separate entity. The risks to your personal assets and to your business growth far outweigh any advantages of […]

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by on February 27, 2018

How to Find the Right Accountant

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There’s no use trying to find an accountant on April 14th and hoping that your issues will miraculously be resolved by tax deadline time. Like hiring other professionals and vendors for your business, you want to take your time to select them carefully. And you want to have them in place before you have an […]

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Post image for Basic Training: Can Employees Legally Take Your Clients?

Your employees can become your next competitors if you don’t handle the relationship carefully . . . and by “carefully,” I mean having non-solicitation agreements and other understandings (in writing!) with your employees. But some folks are “old-school,” or don’t want to spend the money.  As a result, their employees are considered working “at-will” and […]

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by on February 18, 2018

Business Partners Left Holding the Bag

Today’s lesson: you can’t just “walk away” from a business partnership. Another submission from the Department of Horror Stories. “Marcia” started a corporation about 15 years ago. She and her former partner, “Dara,”personally guaranteed a line of credit for the company.About 10 years ago, and after a protracted lawsuit, Marcia left the corporation with an […]

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by on February 15, 2018

Partnership: It Takes Two to Tango

I recently had the pleasure of speaking to (and then finally meeting in person at the BlogHer for Business conference) Sharon Horowitz, PhD, principal of the consulting firm, CenterNorth.  In addition to possessing a keen intellect and a background in psychology (not to mention a charming South African accent), Sharon has put together a brilliant white […]

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Post image for How Entrepreneurs Can Protect Their Ideas

In response to my teleclass announcement, I had an inquiry from a reader in Illinois who was wondering how she could protect her idea for a product aimed at children and young adults. The first thing to recognize is that intangible ideas cannot, in general, be protected — not by using traditional copyright or trademark […]

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Nina in the Media