Question by Steven: Do I need to register my online publishing as a business?
I’ve recently initiated my first foray into online entrepreneurship, and am not sure if my activities constitute a “business” or just… private dealings, if that makes sense. So here’s the deal:
I’ve created a new guide book brand, and recently published the first ebook for Kindle and other ereaders. I’m only dealing in EBooks. And I’ve found more writers to write guides under the same brand. They write the books, I manage them and publish them online, giving the writers a majority of the net profits from Amazon and the other sites. So…. is this a business? Am I breaking any laws by doing this? Even if I’m not, I figure taxes will eat away at my earnings, if I’m paying the the taxes on 100 percent of the royalties, but only keeping a small porting of that for myself. But as a private individual, I can’t hire 1099 contractors, can I? Can a private person register a trademark?
I’m doing my own research on this, but am a little lost and need some initial guidance. BTW, I do already have a thorough contract written up laying out the terms.
Answer by bcnu
You have some serious accounting misdirection! If you’re paying someone else the “majority” of the income, then your “profit” is what’s left, and the rest of it is a deductible cost of doing business.
Yes, anyone can hire a 1099 contractor.
Yes, anyone can own a trademark. The vast majority of trademarks in the USA are not registered anywhere because it’s not required. Ever. You may optionally register in one or more states, for a small fee, or register in the USPTO for a $ 275 filing fee, using online forms at the site linked below (but why bother?)
Not sure exactly what you’re doing, so unclear what other laws you might be unaware of.
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