Big Ideas for Small Business® is dedicated to providing small businesses with the tools they need to gain a solid foundation and future financial success. With counsel for almost every facet of entrepreneurial finance, Big Ideas for Small Business® is your source for the right ideas for growing your business.
July 03, 2020
Independence Day 2020 (Federal Holiday)
Because July 4th falls on a Saturday this year, today is a federal holiday in the U.S. in recognition of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. The Fair Labor Standards Act does not require employers to give any paid holidays, though most do (the number of such paid holidays varies). Businesses may choose to give employees the day off to create a 3-day weekend.
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This year will forever be remembered for the pandemic and what it’s done to the lives and livelihoods of so many people. From a tax perspective, several actions that would normally occur have dramatically changed for 2020. Some actions have been delayed, others have been suspended, and still others (like filing and estimated tax deadlines) have been postponed. The usual rules don’t apply in a number of situations. How do these disruptions for 2020 impact you? Employment tax deferral Normally, employers are required not only to withhold and deposit the employee share of Social Security and Medicare taxes (FICA), but […]
June 30th marks the mid-point of the calendar year and typically is a time to reflect on business thus far and what can be expected for the remainder of this year. But 2020 isn’t typical. For many businesses, the second quarter of 2020 has been dismal due to COVID-related stay-at-home and closure orders. But, as the saying goes, what’s done is done. So take a realistic look at your numbers for Q2. This will help you to make plans for the remaining two quarters of the year. 1. Your health. Many business owners have for months been working from home, […]
The benefits of diversity in staffing have long been recognized, from improved productivity and creativity to increased profits. With that said, there continues to be discrimination—overt or subtle—in some companies. Clearly, it makes good business sense to embrace diversity, but at a minimum, understand what the law demands to avoid any legal problems from discrimination. Federal nondiscrimination laws Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bars discrimination in hiring, firing, promoting, or other work-related decisions based on race, color, religion, sex and national origin. In the more than 50 years since enactment, this law has undergone considerable interpretation […]
Thousands of small businesses have been seriously impacted by the pandemic. It’s been reported that more than 100,000 small businesses closed permanently in New York. Nationwide statistics aren’t available, but anecdotal evidence shows that despite Congressional action so far—with the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and other measures—it just hasn’t been enough to sustain many small companies. On top of the pandemic, a great number of small Main Street businesses have been damaged or destroyed by recent rioting. Small business is in trouble. What can help? Additional Congressional action in the works At the beginning of June, Congress made favorable changes […]
It’s a good business practice to set a budget before the start of the year and then regularly review it. Doing this allows you to adapt your business to changes in revenue and expenses. Of course, with the advent of COVID-19, these changes have been dramatic for many businesses, requiring drastic revisions in the budget. Here are some changes to consider now: Revenue adjustments Depending on the nature of your business, as you re-open you may have reduced revenue because of restrictions on the number of customers you’re permitted to accommodate at any one time. Retail stores and restaurants, for […]
Most insurance policies run annually, and many business owners automatically renew their coverage without reviewing what is and is not covered. Now is a good time to discuss your current policies with your insurance agent and make changes where needed. Basic BOP coverage Small business owners typically carry a comprehensive insurance policy, called a business owners policy (BOP) providing liability coverage for injuries on the premises to third parties (e.g., a customer slips and falls) and property coverage for damage or destruction (e.g., loss of property due to a fire). These policies are designed for office buildings not over 6 […]
Each year the IRS releases statistics on various types of business entities, and most recently it released the latest statistics on sole proprietorships. These stats are derived from Schedule C of Form 1040 for 2017 returns in contrast to the number of such filers and their revenue with 2016 returns. The data also reflect entries on Schedule C-EZ, which is a type of return for sole proprietors that is no longer in use. Sole proprietorships include: Sole proprietorships include independent contractors, freelancers, other gig economy workers, or other self-employed individuals who are not required to file any other type of […]
On June 3, the Senate by unanimous consent approved the Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act of 2020 that the House passed on May 28, 2020, with a vote of 417 to 1. The changes generally are very favorable to small businesses getting loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The following is a summary of the key changes and a brief discussion of questions that haven’t been resolved by the new law. We must await further clarification from the SBA and the IRS on some matters. What’s forgivable? The key feature of the PPP is the ability of a borrower to […]
If you are a woman-owned business, meaning at least 51% is owned by one or more women who are U.S. citizens eligible to participate, you can obtain SBA certification that makes you eligible for federal contracting opportunities (the government’s goal is to award at least 5% of all prime federal contracting to these businesses). But starting July 15, 2020, the certification process will begin to change for women-owned small businesses (WOSBs) and economically disadvantaged women-owned small businesses (EDWOSBs). Eligible businesses may want to act now under existing rules before a tougher certification process takes effect, but further action will still […]
Bankruptcy is a legal process in which a federal court oversees a debtor’s settlements with creditors. Depending on the type of bankruptcy, a business may continue to operate and reemerge without old debts, in other words, gain a fresh start. The number of business bankruptcy filings had declined annually through 2019, but this is 2020 and the pandemic has taken its toll. No one knows how many businesses will choose or be forced to file for bankruptcy protection. If your business is struggling financially, be sure to understand what bankruptcy means and whether you have better alternatives. Types of bankruptcy […]
Can Small Businesses Make a Come Back?
Practical Ideas for Changing Business Operations in a Post-COVID-19 World
Setting Up a Home Office
Successful Tax Planning Strategies for Your Small Business - Interview by Jim Fitzpatrick
-Jim Blasingame, Host of The Small Business Advocate Show
-Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, The Money Coach
-J. S. Budnik
-Meredith Wood, Fundera Ledger