Legal 101 For Small Business Owners: Workplace Safety, Contracts and Smart Budgeting

Being an entrepreneur is an exciting prospect, no matter how old you are. However, it is important that you know all about the legal aspects of owning your business.

Registering Your Business


The first thing you need to do is to register your business as an entity under the law. You need to understand the category your business belongs to and register it correctly. You could be a sole proprietorship, which applies to workers such as freelancers.

You could also be a member of a partnership, which could come with additional tax reports. Another type of business is a limited liability corporation, which would require you to file documents of the organization.

Another option is a C corporation, which would have you filing a wide number of documents, and depending on the circumstances, it could lead to higher taxation.

Contracting Rules

If you have employees or contractors, you are going to need to set up an adequate payroll system. However, you must differentiate employees from contractors first.

Employees are managed by your business, have set working hours, and they are usually instrumental for your company to work.

Meanwhile, contractors are more independent, especially when it comes to the time at which they work. Furthermore, instead of having a monthly paycheck, they’re usually paid by the hour or project.

Depending on the type of worker, you will need to set up an employment agreement or an independent contractor agreement. In both cases, compensation and ownership of work are contemplated. However, in the case of employees, working conditions and role expectations are set.

Alternatively, the details for independent contractors are more focused on the duration of the project and details of the specific project that is going to be executed.

Small Business Worker Safety and Compensation

Employees are protected if they suffer an injury at work. Filing employee compensation is important, and understanding the intricacies involved is crucial for the future of your business.

When the injury is a minor one, the employee should be allowed to leave so that they can receive medical help. However, in the case of a severe injury, they should be brought to the emergency room immediately. Failure to comply could call for the involvement of a personal injury attorney.

Also, you should have a compensation form in hand and ask employees to file it within the first 24 hours after the injury.

You should also create a report describing the injury of your employee so that this can be assessed by the insurance company.

It is also important that you know and are able to provide information about the rights of employees in the context of their compensation.

Finally, the employee should be allowed to go back to work after they’ve recovered from their injury.

Accounting and Taxation

You might be familiar with paying your personal taxes, but it gets more complicated when it comes to a small business.

Some types of taxes you would have to pay include:

  • Self-employment tax (if you are self-employed)
  • Income tax: you can be taxed for this in the case of a sole proprietorship. If you own a corporation, this will have its separate tax.
  • Sales tax: the details on sales tax are different across states. Therefore, you will learn more specifics once you have registered and obtained a sales tax permit.
  • Employment tax: in this case, you’ll need to pay taxes through FICA, which automatically includes collaborations for Medicare and Social Security.

Senior Owners and Probate


When you are a senior owner, concerns about succession might be more prevalent. This is why it is important that you have a plan set in place before any event occurs.

One option is having a business partner to whom the business can be sold after a pre-programmed sale to the owner’s family takes place.

If you are not interested in the business surviving you, then you can set up life insurance that helps your family after you have passed. This tends to happen with small businesses.

If you want the business to survive, you could name a curator that will administer your estate while details are ironed out and your family decides what to do next.

Understanding the laws and your obligations will help you achieve your business goals.


Author bio:

Maria Azadian handles content marketing at Nevada Legal Group. Through her extensive research and commitment to her passion for Human rights, Maria has established herself as a prominent author in personal injury matters in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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