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Business Operations: Forms and Contracts

It can be exciting to start your own business. Being a startup also means that all aspects of the business fall on your shoulders. As a small-business owner, you will encounter various issues while operating your business. This article provides sample legal documents to assist you in your business operations.

Starting a Business

A solid business plan can start your business on the right footing. A business plan is good for defining and identifying business goals. It can also help in obtaining financing.

  • Business Plan: See a real-life example of a business plan on


Effective finance management and accounting are key to a successful business. It's important to keep close track of the income and liabilities of your business. The samples below can help you create tools to track your business finances.

Business Taxes

Small businesses must pay taxes to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and other taxing authorities. Some of the taxes are due monthly. Some of the taxes are due quarterly.

  • Business Taxes: Explains business tax basics, including deductions and recordkeeping basics.


Every business will deal with different types of contracts, whether oral or written. Contracts are binding agreements. It's a good idea for all business owners to have a basic understanding of contract law. Below are a sample sales contract, a checklist for common contract terms, and a sample letter in the event of a billing dispute.

Equipment and Services

Seeing examples of how others have made decisions can be helpful. Below are examples of service agreements and equipment leases.

Sales and Marketing

Effective marketing and advertising are important to reach prospective customers. Figuring out the best place to start for effective sales and marketing can be difficult. Below are sample sales and marketing agreements and a marketing strategy questionnaire.

E-Commerce Checklists

Internet and e-commerce play a large role in how people learn about and engage with businesses. It's important for your business to have a strong internet presence. The checklists below provide helpful information about how to have the best internet exposure for your business.

  • Choosing a Domain Name: Guidelines to assist you in choosing a business name with an internet presence in mind.
  • Disclosure and the Internet: Steps businesses can take to reduce the legal risks when sharing company news online.
  • Establishing a Website: Basic procedural information for establishing a business website.
  • Social Media: Information on social media issues. Corporate use policies, blogging tips, social marketing, and more.

Day-to-Day Business Operations Checklists

Once you have everything set up for your business, it'll be time to run the day-to-day operations. The documents below provide helpful guidance on aspects affecting your daily business operations.

Special Considerations

There are set-asides for certain types of businesses at the local government, state government, and federal government levels. The set-asides generally occur in the areas of government contracting and subcontracting.

Eligibility targets small disadvantaged businesses such as minority-ownedwomen-owned, and service-disabled veteran-owned businesses. Eligibility requirements also include net worth and adjusted income standards.

Several government agencies offer business programs. The Small Business Administration (SBA) offers the Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contract Program and the HUBZone program. The HUBZone program limits competition for certain contracts to small businesses in historically underutilized business zones.

Forms are available here.

Questions About Business Operations Forms and Contracts? Ask an Attorney

If you have questions about starting and running a small business, an attorney can help. Contact an experienced contracts attorney in your area to get those inquiries answered.

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Next Steps: Talk to a Business Lawyer

Contact a qualified business attorney to help you negotiate and craft airtight contracts.

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