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Small Business

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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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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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, August 21, 2018

Small Business Blog: The importance of keeping and maintaining records in a business

By Joseph Kang 

Every great business comes with great responsibility. It’s not a verbatim quote from our former president, but regardless, it’s true. Consistent and accurate recordkeeping, while not glamorous, is essential to running a smooth business operation. By maintaining proper documentation of your business’s operations, transactions, meetings, and members, you will be well equipped to handle the rocky waters when they come. 


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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Small Business Blog: Did you know that you may already be the owner of a copyright? Should you register your copyright?

If you created an original creative work such as a photo, a blog, a YouTube video, training material, or a website, you are immediately protected under copyright law so long as it is fixed in a tangible medium and is not simply an idea in your mind. You immediately own your work and you have the exclusive right to reproduce or copy your work, prepare derivative works, distribute, publicly perform, and publicly display your work.


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