What business licensing can protect me in my online advice business?

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq.

An award-winning small business attorney in New York City, Nina is a sought-after professional speaker and Entrepreneur Magazine online contributor. She is the go-to counsel for knowledge economy and creative companies, delivering legal services and educational resources that save them time, money, and aggravation.

Posted on October 6, 2014 in NOT NEEDED

Q.:  I am starting an online advice column. What business licensing do I need to protect myself?


A.:  An important way to protecting yourself will be in the form of disclaimers, especially if your advice pertains to any kind of professional matter (medical/health, legal, financial/accounting, etc.) where business licensing is involved.

Just as there are disclaimers throughout this website, it’s hard to give specific advice without knowing the “whole story” – something you definitely do not get in an online question.  Your disclaimers should indicate that you’re providing general information or guidance, but can’t address the specific situation in detail.

It’s amazing the kind of trouble that people can get themselves into, and the last thing you need is to get embroiled in a lawsuit because they claimed they relied on your advice . . . to their detriment.  Speak to an attorney to draft the disclaimers and to an insurance professional to see if your business insurance covers your online activities in the event you may be sued.


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