Tips and Strategies for Small Businesses, Freelancers, and Nonprofits

Confidentiality Agreements in Plain English

Simply stated, a Confidentiality Agreement is a legal contract where at least one party agrees not to share or inappropriately use certain information. These agreements are often called nondisclosure agreements, but other than the name, there is no difference.  Both agreements prohibit the disclosure of information. When to use a Confidentiality Agreement? Confidentiality agreements are...

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Why You Shouldn’t Ignore the Boilerplate in Your Contract

The term “boilerplate” is one of those terms in the English language that everyone seems to use without pondering what it actually means.  Say “boilerplate” and most people think of the tiny print of dense legalese that no one reads. Without going into the history of the word, boilerplate (in the context of business contracts)...

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Christine Kuntz in Business Formation, Small Business

How Do I Form a Business in Pennsylvania?

Forming a business can be overwhelming.  You have to navigate government regulations, select the appropriate business entity form, obtain licenses and insurance, and so much more.  How-to books and legal websites make it appear simple, but there are many pitfalls for the inexperienced.  Here is a brief guide to forming a new business in Pennsylvania....

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Christine Kuntz in Business Formation, Small Business

Is Your Home-Based Business Legal?

Sole-proprietors, freelancers, and start-ups frequently work from home (or at least begin there).  Unfortunately, it is not as easy as putting up the proverbial shingle.  There are many legal traps for home-based businesses. Before launching your home-based business, do not forget to investigate these often-overlooked legal matters: Business Formation. Risk management Do you want to...

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Christine Kuntz in Intellectual Property

Why Should I Register A Trademark?

I already registered my name with the State.  Isn’t that enough? Many people think that registering your business with the state gives you the exclusive right to your business name or slogan.  This is not true. State registration is a tax matter.  The state wants to keep track of who is doing business in the...

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Christine Kuntz in Nonprofit Organizations

Do You Need a Small Games of Chance License for your Fundraiser?

At your last fundraiser brainstorming session, that purse bingo idea was stellar. You advertised and generated a lot of interest — including government interest. Now the county treasurer is requesting to see your small games of chance license. Oops. Pennsylvania considers raffles, bingo, 50/50 tickets, auctions, and other common fundraisers to be gambling. Yes, gambling....

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Tune-Up Your Business Today!

September 25th is National Tune-Up Day.  Just as you tune-up your heating system before winter arrives, you also need to periodically tune-up your business to keep it operating efficiently and effectively. How Do I Tune-Up My Business? Business Basics. Start with the basics.  Your entity formation and governing documents. Re-read your LLC Operating Agreement or...

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8 Elements of a Great Employee Handbook

Do you wonder whether you need an employee handbook?  Are you struggling to figure out what to write in your handbook?  In this post , we discuss when you need an employee handbook and the 8 elements of a great employee handbook. Why have an employee handbook? An employee handbook sets expectations for the employer...

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Christine Kuntz in Business Formation, Small Business

Common Funding Sources for Pennsylvania Small Businesses

Money keeps small business owners awake at night.  Starting a small business takes a significant amount of courage and cash.  Many aspiring entrepreneurs talk themselves out of pulling the trigger for fear of debt.   Concerto Law is a proud supporter of small businesses.  Each week, our blog provides practical strategies to help you grow...

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Christine Kuntz in Nonprofit Organizations

What is the difference between “Nonprofit” and “Tax-exempt”?

Is there a difference between a “nonprofit” and a “tax-exempt” entity?  Yes.  While the terms are related, not all nonprofits are tax-exempt.  Knowing the difference is important to directors, managers, and even donors. What is a Nonprofit? “Nonprofit” refers to a type of entity.  Though each state has its unique requirements, “nonprofit” means the organization...

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Christine Kuntz in Nonprofit Organizations

How To Give Your Nonprofit A Legal Check-up

Legal check-ups are great tool for nonprofits to measure their compliance and avoid complicated and expensive legal problems.  Many organizations understand the value of a legal check-up but aren’t certain how to do it and what it involves.  Read this post to learn how to give your nonprofit a legal check-up. What is a legal...

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Christine Kuntz in Business Formation, Small Business

How to Be Friends and Business Partners

Should friends go into business together?  While business conflicts have irretrievably broken some friendships, many more friends have created successful businesses without hating each other.  Read these tips if you are starting a business with a friend. Get it in Writing If you don’t do anything else, put your business agreement in writing.  This means...

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What are Employer Obligations under the ADA

Thirty years have passed since the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law.  This law was the most significant piece of civil rights legislation for those with disabilities.  The ADA offers individuals with disabilities important protections from discrimination in the workplace so they can pursue meaningful employment. Nearly all employers agree that individuals with...

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Christine Kuntz in Business Formation, Small Business

It Takes Money to Make Money: Finding Funds for Your New Business

Few entrepreneurs create successful businesses on a shoestring.  Most businesses, especially those requiring equipment, inventory, or physical space, need money to get the business off the ground.  There is no secret.  If you are not independently wealthy or bankrolled by your family, you must rely on loans or investors. Fund Your Business With a Loan...

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Christine Kuntz in Business Formation, Small Business

Essential Documents for a New Pennsylvania LLC

Starting an LLC in Pennsylvania  The limited liability company (LLC) is a popular form of business entity for both seasoned business people and first-time entrepreneurs.  Beyond registering with the state, what are the essential documents for a new Pennsylvania LLC?  This post discusses the document we, at Concerto Law, believe are the most important. Certificate...

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