Establishing and maintaining a business successfully require knowledge of and compliance with all applicable business regulations. It can be easy for these laws to seem adversarial, but if you comply, you can see your business flourish and profit. What exactly do you need to know about business regulations? You may face laws governing the establishment and day-to-day operations of your business from any combination of federal, state and local authorities. Keeping track of these standards and maintaining compliance is key to your company’s success.
What Regulations Will My Business Be Subject To?
Establishing a business is an ambitious undertaking. One reason is the extensive regulations that are imposed. Some sectors are regulated by targeted agencies or legislation, but no matter what line of work you are in, you will likely have to deal with the following regulations:
- Laws: Your operations will be subject to legislation governing the parameters of business. Most of these laws define the practices that are permissible and those that are not.
- Licensing: You may also be required to obtain a license in order to do business. If so, you will likely have to apply, await approval and renew it periodically.
- Zoning: Businesses are typically prohibited from operating in residential areas, and there may be other zoning ordinances that apply, too.These are the most basic business regulations you can anticipate, though there may be other standards to become familiar with as well.
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act
In 1996, Congress passed the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act, or SBREFA, to limit the excessive regulation of small businesses. The act remains an important part of small business legislation, and it provides certain protections to businesses:
- Concessions made for small businesses to voice input regarding the development of regulations that affect them
- Access to compliance assistance resources, including ones for federal regulations
- Tools and information to respond to regulations and enforcementsEach of these aspects of the law allows businesses to engage with regulatory agencies to understand their standards and compliance requirements.
Regulatory Flexibility Act
Following SBREFA, the Regulatory Flexibility Act was passed in 1980. It functions to provide small businesses with legal recourse in the face of enforcement of regulations. The act is targeted primary at the government agencies which enforce business standards, and it provides guidelines for fairly imposing regulations. Some of the actions the law initiated are as follows:
- Proposal of alternative regulations that maintain original objective when economic distress will be inflicted by intended methods of enforcement
- Businesses wishing to appeal prescribed enforcement may pursue judicial review
- Agencies enforcing regulations must keep records of all efforts as well as their compliance with both SBREFA and the Regulatory Flexibility ActThese provisions provide additional protection to businesses that face regulatory scrutiny and potentially unfair violation enforcements. They also draw greater attention to the devastating economic impact enforcements can have, even if they are fair. In turn, small businesses should be shielded from disproportionate enforcement of regulations.
Evolving Regulations for Businesses
The Regulatory Flexibility Act and SBREFA are two of the most important laws for business owners to become familiar with, but you should also keep up to date with ever-evolving standards applied to your own business practices. These are a few of the most heavily regulated aspects of your day-to-day business:
- Overtime and wages
- Health insurance options
- Hiring and disciplinary actions
- Hours employees workThese are some often-shifting elements of work, but many other parts of your business are governed by laws and agencies that can change often. Your best defense is to stay vigilant, knowledgeable and prepared when it comes to regulations. Keep up to date on amendments and new legislation, and if you are faced with a violation of compliance, rely on the rights granted to you by the Regulatory Flexibility Act.
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