Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Small Business Law Blog: What is a trade name? What is a DBA? What is a fictitious business name?

A “trade name” is also called a “DBA” (or “d/b/a”) or a “fictitious business name.” I found an article on the first page of Google that distinguished the three, but please ignore that because the three terms mean the same thing. In the State of Missouri, you can register a fictitious name. In New York, you register for a Certificate of Assumed Name. In the District of Columbia, you register a trade name. (Remember that a trade name is different from a trademark.) I will be using the term “trade name” throughout this article.

A trade name is any name used by a business that is different from the registered name on file with the state. If you are a sole proprietor or a general partnership that has not registered with the state, then the trade name would be a business name you are using that does not include the legal names of the sole proprietor or partners. For example, if a sole proprietor named Jolene has a YouTube channel called “JoJo’s Toys,” “JoJo’s Toys” is a trade name.

Most states require businesses using a trade name to register the trade name. Even if your business is registered as “Peanut Butter Snacks L.L.C.,” and you want to use “Peanut Butter Snacks” without the “L.L.C.,” you will usually be required to register the trade name. The states’ reasoning for this requirement is to ensure that customers, vendors, and other individuals or entities doing business with the company (or individual, in the case of a sole proprietorship, or a partner, in the case of a partnership) know the correct identity of whom they are engaging in business.

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Wednesday, February 6, 2019

When Should You Reach Out to Your Small Business Attorney During the Life Cycle of Your Business?

A good rule of thumb is to hire an attorney on retainer and resolve potential issues before they arise. This list is not exhaustive, but it will give new business owners an idea of some of the legal issues their businesses may face. Contact an attorney during these points in the life cycle of your small business:

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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Mark Your Calendars!

Please join us if you are in the greater NYC area. I will be facilitating a discussion on “The Business of Being in Business,” and I will be available to answer some frequently asked business law questions. All are welcome! Please call us at (202) 630-6546 or email us at if you have any questions. We look forward to hearing from you.

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Monday, January 14, 2019

Client Spotlight: BCENE PR

BCENE PR is on the cutting edge of everything cool that is happening in the digital media space. Brittanie Clement Price, the Principal, is a powerhouse packed with effective tools, advice, and strategies to help you gain exposure to your prime audiences. Her superpower is hands-down, storytelling. Brittanie’s award-winning expertise is backed by her impressive work ethic, her attention to detail, and her innate creativity. Basically, she is a bombproof combination of talent and hard work. This is a company that you will definitely want to know and get to know.

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Monday, January 14, 2019

Five Surefire PR Tools & Strategies Every Small Business Will Need in 2019

By: Brittanie Clement Price, Principal of BCENE PR

In today’s ever-crowded digital space, successful PR goes beyond “pressing play” on a press release. Solid PR strategies marry paid, owned, earned and shared media to create meaningful content across target outlets– from regional lifestyle magazines, to the local news or even social media influencers.

So how do small businesses and up-and-coming brands navigate the rapidly changing landscape on a limited budget? Here are five surefire PR tools and strategies every small business will need in 2019:

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Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Happy New Year!

As you grow your businesses, I am expectant that 2019 will be your business’s best year to date.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Small Business Law Blog: Top 5 Mistakes Small Businesses Make

This is the legal edition of the top 5 mistakes that our firm has seen small businesses make.

5. Relying on your accountant for legal advice

We love accountants, don’t get us wrong. Lawyers and accountants go together like turkey and stuffing. (Can you tell Thanksgiving is on our minds?) But to be candid, we have also seen many businesses rely on the advice of their accountants to their detriment.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Small Business Blog: LLC Taxation FAQs

Many first-time business owners confuse business entities from their tax classifications. And for good reason. In this article, we will give an overview of the difference between a business entity such as an LLC versus its tax classification. Remember that for tax questions, you should always seek out the advice of a tax professional, and the information here should not be construed as advice specific to your situation.

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Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Small Business Blog: Why you should trademark your brand

Trademarks are essential to protecting your business’s goodwill and reputation. Imagine the Nike trademark with its “swoosh” logo and “just do it” slogan. What would have happened if Nike did not protect its logo and slogan with a trademark? There would be many copycat businesses that crop up, taking advantage of the opportunity to associate itself with the primary brand. What would then happen to the Nike brand? It would be diluted, its value would diminish, and its reputation would be tarnished, especially since copycat brands would likely offer a lower quality product.

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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

How Much Do Lawyers Charge?


Hello Everyone:

My name is Kimberly Shin. I am a small business attorney. And today we are going to talk about how much lawyers charge. But how much lawyers charge really depends on the lawyer and your specific situation. So the real question that we’ll be answering today is what are the different methods lawyers use to bill their clients? And generally, there are four that are the most common. And the other billing methods usually involve a hybrid of one or more of the four that I’ll be talking about today.

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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Small Business Blog: How to be smart and wary in a partnership

Building a business from ground zero is an exciting prospect and a rewarding experience in and of itself. Building a business with a friend or other business partner can be even more exciting. Partnerships can be formed between best friends. You may imagine working and fighting together through thick and thin. You may be thinking about some of your friends right now and how amazing it would be to have a startup and profit off the business venture together. However, when things get tough or even when things are great and falling right into place, that once firm partnership bond can change. When your business becomes a huge success and profits start flowing in, who gets what and how much? Even though many partnerships can stem from life-long friends and close colleagues from college, making clear cut boundaries early on will save you a lot of trouble. If you are looking to start a business venture with a partner, whoever it may be, here are a couple key tips to keep in mind.

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