There are some common laws and local laws that you’ll need to follow, depending on your neighborhood and where you plan to start your business.
Ignorance is no excuse – if you end up in court, you can’t simply say that you didn’t know what you were doing.
Business Formation Laws
This law defines the type of business entity you have formed – a sole proprietorship, partnership, or a limited liability company (LLC).
Each one of these entities has different tax structures and legal implications. When you’re deciding on your business’ entity, you should consult a tax attorney or accountant.
This law defines the types of businesses allowed in certain zones or areas. There might be some restrictions in particular areas, so if you are planning to run your business from home or lease office space, make sure you look into this.
Certain businesses will need certain types of license to operate. For example, a restaurant might require a different license to operate compared to a hardware store.
You need to have the correct type of license to operate your business. You don’t want to open your restaurant only to have the city shut you down because you don’t have the proper licenses.
These laws are very important – because once you start generating sales, you will have to file the relevant returns and pay your taxes accordingly. You should hire a tax attorney or accountant to do this for you, but you still need to have knowledge about sales, billing, sending invoices and paying your vendors.
At the end of the fiscal year, your accountant can help you to calculate your income taxes.
Knowledge of employment law is also very important, since unhappy employees can take you to court if you do not follow the proper procedures in hiring, paying or firing them.
OSHA (Occupational Health and Safety Administration) laws must also be followed when it comes to ensuring the safety of your employees. If you violate OSHA, and one of your employees gets hurt, you could be sued.
Health, Fire and Air, and Water Pollution Department Laws
If you are starting a restaurant, a fast food business or anything related to food products, you will need to get the necessary permits from the health department first. Your business can be shut down if you do not comply with these rules.
Your business also has to conform to fire safety rules – health and fire inspectors will regularly check up on your business to make sure that you are in compliance.
Knowing laws relating to the environment is especially important these days. They have to be adhered to, especially if you are starting a car servicing center or any other business that uses waste products to be disposed of.
If your company uses any hazardous materials, make sure you know how you should dispose of them without harming the environment – you don’t want to be accused of illegal dumping.
Intellectual Property Laws
If you are into inventing and patenting products or ideas, you need to have some knowledge of intellectual property and copyright law. These laws can be quite convoluted, so it pays to enlist the services of an attorney specializing in this area.
When you have a business, you have a responsibility to ensure that you are in compliance with the law. Doing so will help your business run much more smoothly.