People often think that business has to do nothing with law, but that’s absolutely not true! How can a business survive in this crazy e commerce world without following certain rules and policies? How can a business succeed, if business and law are two different categories? In this article, we will show you the strong bond between these two, and how this perfect combination can lead to success.
Trademark, Patent, Copyright In E Commerce
Before talking about the rules that exist for small businesses, we would like to talk about actual laws that need to be followed. In the e commerce world, where counterfeiters and infringers enjoy their job of emptying your credit card and violating all terms and conditions, it’s important to protect your small business! Remember, everything can be copied if you don’t care enough about your brand. And that’s when people came up with intellectual property rights… In general, the are four types of intellectual property rights, and among them, these three are considered the most popular ones:
Trademark – Trademark is governed by Federal Law, and all the regulations concerning this IP right are included in the Lanham Act. A trademark is a symbol, phrase, word, or even design that helps you symbolize your brand or product as ownership and distinguish it from other ones. For example, “Just Do It” is a trademark for Nike.
Patent – according to WIPO (World International Property Organization) a patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides, in general, a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem. To get a patent, technical information about the invention must be disclosed to the public in a patent application.
Copyright – this refers to the rights that creators have over their literary and artistic works. As WIPO says, works covered by copyright range from books, music, paintings, sculpture, and films, to computer programs, databases, advertisements, maps, and technical drawings.
Child Protection For Your Online Business
Did you know that your website should follow all the regulations of The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act? Yes, you must know that this act is very important in the business sphere since the privacy of children has always been at risk! “COPPA specifically protects the privacy of children under the age of 13 by requesting parental consent for the collection or use of any personal information of the users.”
This means that your website shouldn’t collect information about its users who are under the age of 13, and what’s more, your website should be able to identify the age of their users! If you’re selling products that are obviously designed for adults, you should make sure your website has the capacity to check the age. For example, have you seen those boxes that appear when you enter a website? They always ask you to verify your birth date or your age, and that’s quite normal!
Terms and Conditions of the E Commerce World: Licenses
Unfortunately, starting a business is not that easy! If you plan to launch your own company in an XYZ industry, you should, first of all, make sure that you can do that! What does that mean? It means that certain industries want you to have licenses and permits in order to work there! The main role of a business license is to provide the government with an opportunity to keep track of your business, its activities and their tax revenues.
As the U.S. Small Business Administration says, most small businesses need a combination of licenses and permits from both federal and state agencies. The requirements — and fees — vary based on your business activities, location, and government rules. The formula is pretty easy: you take the industry you want to start your business in, look at the list of existing industries and find the license issuing agency. This is how business owners usually get their licenses.
ATTENTION: there are certain industries that require having a license in one state, and don’t require anything in the other. Always pay close attention to the business laws of your state, because as you may already know, they vary from state to state! What’s more, some states establish heavy fines that an online business should pay if it doesn’t have a license….
Many people think that paying “eCommerce taxes” is absurd, but we assure you that there’s nothing strange about it! One of those taxes is sales tax, which is collected by retailers. Just a quick reminder, that if you are an eCommerce seller and want to source products from a Z retailer, in their eyes you are a customer! Hope you won’t be surprised when it comes to the payment process….!
If you want to know which product is taxable, and which is not, we will help you with that! In general, most tangible products are taxable. For example, you want to buy a new desk for your office that costs $500. However, if you don’t know anything about sales taxes, you would be surprised to see your total bill! If you’re living in a state with 7% sales tax, you will have to pay $35 dollars more, and your total would be $535! In other words, if you want to start an eCommerce business and have decided the products you are going to sell, you are most likely to deal with such a thing like Sales Tax.
Remember that just like business laws, tax regulations also vary from state to state! Make sure you do your research, and only then think about taxes and other complicated things…
As you can see there are certain business laws that need to be followed by each and every company across the United States. Everyone, even platforms like Amazon or eBay follow these rules, and you, as a responsible head of the business should do so as well! Sometimes you may think that this or that rule doesn’t apply to your business, but it’s always better to check before acting!
We at Jerome Basilio are ready to help you with our eCommerce store! If you feel that you don’t manage or you are not able to cope with the terms and conditions, policies, and requirements, you can always trust us in this process! Our eCommerce specialists will help you get on the right track and succeed, just contact us!