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Legitimate Home Based Businesses and The Tax Department

Aug 17, 2007
There are a number of steps that must be followed when you set up your home based business to ensure that it is legitimate and that you do not contravene some of the local and federal laws. While we cannot get into specifics since requirements vary by city, region, state and country, we will cover some of the general items that you may want to look into with regard to setting up a legitimate home based business.

Every city and town will have bylaws in place that provide legal requirements regarding the type of business you may run out of your home. These laws govern such things as changes to your home to facilitate your business, the amount of traffic you are allowed, parking, sanitary requirements and many other items. If you are planning a business that will have employees or customers coming to your home, require structural changes to your home, prospective home business owners should look into local bylaw requirements.

The main topic of this article is about meeting the needs of the provincial, state or federal tax department and laws that are in place in your country and region were you live. They are all different and without question you must investigate the requirements in the country and state or province you live in. The IRS in the USA and Revenue Canada each have specific requirements from a tax perspective for all business including home based businesses. Similarly each state and province also have requirements.

These requirements usually consist of registering as a business for tax purposes, filing on a regular basis, collecting and paying VAT taxes (GST in Canada), payroll deductions, and a number of other reporting requirements. Some business owners will find all of this overwhelming while others may have the ability to deal with and meet all of these requirements. While it is a personal decision, most are better off to hire a professional accountant as well as perhaps a lawyer to deal with these issues. This will provide you with more time to focus on making your legitimate home based business successful, which is the primary reason for starting this opportunity in the first place.

The degree of registration is also an important consideration. Many small home based businesses will register as a sole proprietor and avoid much of the registration requirements and cost. However the downside is that if someone should decide to sue you for breach of contract or some other issue, all of your business and personal assets are at risk. Registered businesses that are incorporated protect the owners personal assets and there are a number of other legal steps that a good lawyer can put in place to assist in this regard.

Small business owners who are setting up a legitimate home based business should discuss each of these requirements with the experts in the area you live to avoid creating any legal issues with the local and federal authorities.
About the Author
Elias Georgi is an experienced and successful sponsor, mentor and coach for many thriving home businesses. Elias offers proven work at home business opportunities and strategies.
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