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Legal responsibilities and business ethics for a teen-owned company

There’s a saying that if there’s something worth doing, it’s worth doing right. When you decide as a teen to own your own business, there are some legal responsibilities that you need to consider. There are also a few business ethics you need to follow to ensure you are doing business within your area properly. While it may be great for you to create your own teen jobs by becoming your own boss, you’re not immune from various legal issues.

You must create your business with the proper licensing, just like anyone else. You have the option of going to the Small Business Administration department of the government to get some additional information or talking to a business advisor about what you need to do and how best to handle your business.

At the very least, you need to go down to your City’s office and apply for a business license. The clerks will help you fill out the form and pay the minimal fee to get your license. This will allow you to legally conduct business in your area. Whether you work part time, full time or over the summer with this business, it’s best to have the license.

If you are planning on reselling anything as part of your jobs for teens, then you will need a reseller’s license from your State Board of Equalization as well. When you give the tax office all the details about your business, they will likely tell you what else you need to ensure you are doing everything legally.

Some of your friends may be looking at after-school jobs and other forms of employment. When they get their paychecks, they have money missing out of there for taxes. If you’re becoming an entrepreneur you may have tax deductions for running your own business, so you need to consult an Accountant or an Attorney for details. The purpose of this article is not to give you tax or legal advice, it is just a reminder of what the necessary steps you need to take.

You can work with a local accountant to figure out how to set up your business so that Uncle Sam is getting his fair share of your earnings. When your parents fill out their taxes for the year, you may be required to fill out some tax forms along with them or on your own if you are no longer listed as their dependent.

A business license and taxes will cover you on a bulk of the legal responsibilities. You also want to consider ways that you can protect your business. This includes such things as patents, copyrights, trademarks and trade secrets. Patents will be for an invention while copyrights are for artistic work. If you’ve got a name, symbol or motto, you may want to consider a trademark while trade secrets are for information you don’t want your competition to learn about because you will lose your edge in the marketplace.

If you’re driving a vehicle or you’re visiting other people’s homes, you may want to consider some form of business insurance as well. This will greatly depend on the nature of your business. Having liability insurance can protect you legally in the event that you damage someone else’s property. To avoid getting sued (or having your parent’s getting sued because you’re a minor), an insurance policy can be a great thing to have and a requirement for most states.

You must be respectful of other businesses in your area. While you may be able to use some of their information as a model to help you set up your own, you can’t blatantly steal their ideas, their logos or anything else. This is where you must be cautious about business ethics. Ask questions from area businesses but be forthcoming as to why you want the information.

Volunteer jobs for teenagers may be a great way for you to get your feet wet into an area of business before you try to focus on creating your own business. By volunteering, you will get the chance to see how business works. You may be able to work part time for a few weeks or few months and figure out what you will need to do in order to be successful on your own.

Legalities and ethics must be considered when you go into business for yourself. Depending on whether you’re under 18 or what type of business you are creating, the legalities may be a little different. As a teen, you are not immune to the law, which means that much of what standard businesses do will still need to be done by you, as well. Contact your City to ask questions and even make a call to an accountant to see how they can assist you.

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