business, personal

The Value Of Personal Assistant Services

Many startup businessmen are confused whether hiring a personal assistant service would be the ideal choice for them to take their business to the next level. Generally, when it comes to hiring a personnel, most of the businessmen will think whether hiring such an individual will be beneficial for their business and whether it will be helpful in increasing the productivity of their organization. Only when their question is justified, they will take further step towards the process. This is true in the case of hiring a PA as well.

Generally, most of the established businessmen go for hiring a personal assistant service, when a new project is about to begin. When a new project begins, the key personnel, who was taking care of tasks of personal assistance will be forced to be engaged in this new project and so there should be some other individual in the place of this individual just for the time being until the project gets completed. So, for this short period, they go for hiring the service of a company, who has expertise in this area. We are looking for the most sophisticated, kind, outgoing, and polished individual to act as a right hand person for our client.

As the professional firms offering personal assistant services, will have many such trained personnel working for them, they can assign the right kind of personnel with experience in the same field of operations of their customers. This will enable the customers to get the right kind of intended service from the personnel.

Another situation, when businesses look for personal assistant services is during the restructuring of the business. During this process, generally the jobs of most of the staff will be redefined. During these times, each of the staff will be forced to do the work of two people and there should be someone to carry out the administrative work of the organization and here these service providers can provide the right personnel intended by the businessmen contacting them.

Another situation that might need a PA is when an event is planned to be held in the organization. Sometimes, big corporate firms will have corporate gatherings and even sometime some client meeting will be planned to be held in a larger scale. In these circumstances, PAs can be entrusted to take care of all the tasks pertaining to the successful arrangements for the gathering or events. They can provide the right kind of service in this arena.…

business, money

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Exemptions – Timothy McFarlin

A consumer filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy is entitled to certain “exemptions” in order to allow them to retain assets required for a fresh start after bankruptcy.  The idea is, a consumer would not be able to live their normal life and rehabilitate their financial situation without certain items, such as a car (to get to work), household items, clothing, tools of the trade, etc.  It is not the objective of the bankruptcy court, or the bankruptcy system in general, to completely decimate a consumer filing bankruptcy, but rather to assist them in starting over without the burden of creditors aggressively pursuing them to collect debts.  If a borrower does have items or assets beyond what is considered “exempt” the bankruptcy trustee assigned to the case is tasked with the job of liquidating such assets to raise money to pay creditors.  The vast majority of chapter 7 cases, especially consumer and small business cases, are “no-asset” cases in which no assets or property is liquidated.

Some common items that are typically exempt (under most circumstances) include: house, car, clothing and household furniture and items, clothing, jewelry, electronics, tools, and many other items.  In California, there is additionally a “wildcard” exemption which can be used to exempt any property up to about $22,000.00.  This can even cover money in a bank account or cash.

Chapter 7 bankruptcy exemptions are intended to protect families from being completely stripped of any means to survive following a bankruptcy.  It would serve no social or legal purpose, and contradict the spirit of bankruptcy protection, to take away from families all their possessions and assets in bankruptcy.  Bankruptcy is designed to protect consumers and businesses, not destroy them.  Exemptions are the means by which this objective is accomplished.

From a policy perspective, there is a careful balance the bankruptcy code seeks to strike between the interests of consumers (debtors) and their creditors.  Obviously creditors’ interests cannot be ignored and a debtor with substantial assets must surrender those assets exceeding the exemption limits to the bankruptcy trustee for liquidation and to raise money to pay creditors.  Bankruptcy exemptions are important for creditors in bankruptcy as well because they set limits on what debtors can keep.  Should a debtor go into chapter 7 bankruptcy with substantial assets beyond the exemption limits, those assets are used to pay creditors through the bankruptcy liquidation process.  The policy objective is give the consumer an opportunity to make a fresh start, but not to abuse the bankruptcy system either. 

A prospective debtor should always consult with a bankruptcy lawyer before filing their case to determine what would be the best course of action for their particular circumstances.  Based on the advice of a bankruptcy lawyer a consumer can better decide what items can be retained through the bankruptcy process.  It is also critical to properly exempt assets, exemptions are not automatic, but rather must be specifically used by proper bankruptcy code citations on a debtors “Schedule C.”  Even if a debtor could exempt …

business, money

Money: An Idea backed by Confidence

MONEY: AN IDEA BACKED BY CONFIDENCE

It has been discovered some time in the 1960’s that the inability of a person to define the words or symbols of a language or a subject makes the full understanding of that language or subject outside the grasp of a person. A person will be unable to fully understand and grasp how to control that subject fully, making him or her appear dull or even stupid on that particular subject. For example, a person who is working in a workshop who does not know what a hammer is, when asked for a hammer by one of his colleagues, might guess at what it is and present a screw driver to his colleague instead. We use words to describe concepts of the world around us, hence not knowing the concept fully can hinder person’s understanding of the world around him or her. So not knowing the definitions of words or symbols closes the world off to one to some degree. An obvious example of this is when people near you are speaking a language which you don’t understand – you hear that they are speaking alright, but the words seem to be a stream of “blah blah blah…” which you don’t really “hear” because you don’t understand it.

This principle can occur with any subject whether you are just learning it or whether you have learnt it in the past, but had words you didn’t fully understand. Where else could such principle apply? Well, for now and the purpose of this article how about the subject of money?

 Money! We use it every day in almost every aspect of our lives. Every business is driven by it and many times in our society we judge success by it.

It could be the solution to many problems or the stumbling block of a person, group, business or nation. There are many analysts who teach of the best ways to manipulate it and how to make more of it. It drives some men to great heights in pursuit of it, and shoves others still to great depths of depression and apathy in search of ways to make it and reach it, with little success. It seems to be the major cause of stress and the objective of many to attain more of it.

But, what is it? Is it paper bills with heads of state printed on it or coins made with cheap metal with a coat of arms on one surface? Perhaps. However, using the above reasoning maybe there could be something more to know. Do you know the definition of money, to start with?

DEFINITIONS OF MONEY

Here are some of the most widely accepted definitions. Money has been defined as:

  1.  “Anything that serves as a common medium for exchange in trade, as coins or notes”.Money is a good (product) that acts as a medium of exchange in transactions.
  2. Classically it is said that money acts as a:

a.    unit of account,

b.    …

business

Seattle New Business Owners: Tips for Choosing Your Business Entity

Selecting what kind of business you create is very important.  It affects everything from the way you are taxed to the amount of liability you may have.  There are a handful of different entities. Have a look at them all and decide which is best for you with the assistance of a Seattle business attorney.  Don’t forget, you aren’t forever locked into that structure.  As your business evolves, so can its entity.  What is important is that you consult a Seattle business attorney before you make this critical decision for your new business.

How much thought have you put into structuring your new business?  How informed are you about the different options available?  If you haven’t given it deep thought, or are simply “at a loss” to know how to proceed, the good news is that you really shouldn’t have to agonize over the decision.  A qualified Seattle business formation lawyer can advise you on the relevant issues for each type of business entity structure.  Outlined below are the standard business entity types in the United States, and though many other countries have similar types of business entities, it is suggested that you investigate all of your business entity options with an experienced Seattle area attorney.  The summary below presents a brief synopsis of the pros and cons for each type of entity.  It is meant to initially educate you as a new business owner, and not to be used as the sole guideline for making this important decision.

Sole Proprietorship

  • Pro: Easy to create
  • Pro: Freedom from many regulations
  • Pro: Pass Through Entity
  • Con: Unlimited Liability
  • Con: Hiring People can be tricky

Partnership

  • Pro: Easy to create
  • Pro: Freedom from many regulations (although not as many as Sole Proprietorship)
  • Pro: Pass Through Entity
  • Con: Unlimited Liability for all partners
  • Con: Possible politics and issues between members

Corporations

  • Pro: Limited Liability
  • Pro: Well known entity type
  • Con: Difficult to set up
  • Con: Double Taxation (not pass through)
  • Con: Many Regulations to do business
  • Con: Difficult to operate

Limited Liability Partnership

  • Pro: Fairly easy to establish
  • Pro: Limited Liability
  • Pro: Pass through entity
  • Con: Must have at least two partners at all times
  • Con: Transferring interests is difficult

Limited Liability Company

  • Pro: Fairly easy to establish
  • Pro: Limited Liability
  • Pro: Pass through entity
  • Pro: Freedom of operation
  • Pro: One person can own 100% interest
  • Con: Hard to issue stock for an IPO

The last two entity structures in the summary above are the newest types established to encourage more individuals to start businesses and other investment projects.  Be certain to cover all of these entities with a Seattle business attorney to determine which one is best suited to meet your unique business and financial goals.  If you are entering your “first venture” as a business owner, it may be prudent for you to retain a Seattle small business lawyer who is both experienced in handling the legal paperwork, and interested in assisting small business owners.

Keep in mind that these entity …

business

Why You Should Use a Letterhead

All types of communication from a legal institution, whether a large or small university or any corporate entity could not be regarded as official unless written in a paper with a letterhead.

This letterhead is the heading at the top of a sheet of letter paper. It usually consists of a name and an address, and a logo or corporate design, and sometimes a background.

A letterhead may also refer to a piece of letter paper imprinted with such a heading or a printed stationery. A business letterhead normally comprise a logo, a return address, and a telephone number. Direct marketers have found that the design of the letterhead can impact response to a promotion letter.

For promotion letters, it is good to create one of a kind letterhead for each letter, one that is designed to the style of the letter copy altering the logo, color, or even return address. For instance, a fund-raising campaign letter for a nonprofit organization may use a simple black-and-white letterhead rather than the organization’s usual two-color embossed, gothic-type letterhead that may sound too sophisticated.

Some marketers have rented post office boxes in a location suitable to their product, such as a Washington, D.C., box to use as a letterhead address for a political fund-raising campaign or a Florida P.O. Box to use for a cruise line. At the same time, there are other traders, who consider a color letterhead will create a more positive feedback than a black-and-white letterhead, unmindful of the promotion type, because the color stimulates the reader’s level of interest in the letter.

On the other hand, there are various legal constraints on the items included in a letterhead, for example in England and Wales it may include the names of all directors or none, but not a selection.

Nevertheless, it is important that whether you are a small business or a multinational one, top management should never forget about the letterhead, as others simply overlook the importance of the letterhead. A company’s letterhead is truly an essential piece to their business identity. It sets the stage for everything else that follows. Almost every piece of advertising literature that the company produces will feature its letterhead, which continually reinforces its importance.

So invest some time in creating a solid letterhead. Consider what feeling you want each of your customers to have when they receive something from you, and incorporate that into your letterhead design. Among the things you should consider is the color. A black and white letterhead can be effective, but there really is no reason why you shouldn’t use color. Color printing is not that expensive, and the positive impact it will have on your letterhead is significant. Use colors that emphasize the purpose of your business and that evoke the type of feelings that you want your customers to have.

Another thing to consider is the paper. The smoother the paper, the better your letterhead will look. In fact, for any literature that you print yourself, you …

business, insurance, money

A Handy Guide To Cyber Insurance

Cyber insurance covers a broad range of exposures, including hacked computers, viruses, denial of service attacks, and a bevy of other claims. With the right policy, it can be extended to include trademark and copyright coverage.  All firms that utilize IT professionals should purchase a cyber insurance policy that is tailored to meet the needs of their own organization.

What is Cyber Insurance?

Cyber insurance can include a number of different exposures from network security which protects against hackers, to claims that you were negligent in meeting your responsibility to protect the data and computers of your clients.  The abuse of websites has given rise to unanticipated numbers of copyright and trademark violations.

Most states now have laws that require you to inform your customers when their data has been compromised on your system.  Even if no further damage develops, the cost of notification typically approximates $8 per record.  In other words, if a hacker successfully penetrates your server housing 150,000 customer records, the cost of notification could be $1.2 million, even if you weren’t negligent.

The availability of cyber insurance has expanded rapidly in recent years.  There are now over a dozen insurance companies that offer well structured, competitively priced cyber liability insurance policies.  Be advised, however, that coverage is not standard.  A well qualified agent, schooled in the technical issues surrounding cyber liability can help you navigate the available coverages.

3 Tips for Building Cyber Insurance Policies

  1. Know your coverage. General liability insurance policies are designed to protect you if you are negligent, but in order for coverage to be triggered, they require property damage or bodily injury. Cyber attacks typically cause money damages, but to not necessarily physically harm your system.  In order to be covered, you will need to purchase a policy that is specifically tailored to your company’s exposures.
  2. Maintain a strong infrastructure. Insurance companies will only agree to insure you if you take active steps to protect yourself. A formal IT audit of your systems will increase your access to insurance coverage, and can dramatically reduce premiums.  The audit will cover a variety of internet security issues.
  3. Build sound internet procedures that require frequent changes in passwords and that regulate what can be placed on your site.  Most copyright violations result from employees posting material from other sites on the web.  Make sure that they understand what is and is not acceptable.

A Business Investment

Since many companies will not report incidences of data loss or denial of service attacks, it’s difficult to gauge the frequency of cyber insurance claims. You should use common sense and only cover your company for claims that you can anticipate.

Still, buying cyber insurance is a necessity for companies who deal extensively with technology. Assemble a plan that will cover you so that you can run your business securely.…

business, insurance, money, personal

Why is Insurance Important?

There are different types of insurance. Home, automobile, and life are just three of the various kinds of insurance policies that are available for consumers. Insurance, of all kinds, is used to help protect consumers when certain things happen. For the most part, this protection comes in the form of money. It can also provide protection from liability, damages, and financial loss, but in the end, it usually comes down to money.

Most consumers know that there are certain types of insurance that are mandatory. Many states require that automobile owners carry a minimum amount of insurance for each vehicle the person or business owns. As with some other types of insurance, automobile insurance can be somewhat broad in nature. In other words, you can buy a simple liability policy that will pay a certain amount of money to someone that you have an accident with, but will pay nothing towards your own damages. Moving up the scale, you could purchase a more comprehensive policy that pays for damages to both you and the other person, including medical awards and property damages. There are levels of coverage all along the way, and this is why automobile insurance can be considered broad in nature.

In the case of automobile insurance, the reason insurance is important is that it protects you from having to pay damages in the event that you are found at fault for the accident. Without automobile insurance, you might lose everything that you have, including future earnings in order to pay these damages. Most consumers simply cannot afford to buy another vehicle for someone should they severely damage that person’s automobile. The same holds true for any medical costs that might be associated with an accident wherein you are found at fault.

With home owner’s insurance, the minimum coverage level is often determined by the lender. Many home owners will add to this level of coverage in order to protect such things as their furniture and other personal items against loss. Coverage will usually extend to people who may be on the property should they encounter an accident and sustain injuries. Again, the importance of insurance is to protect the owner from legal actions that may arise from outside parties as well as to protect the owner from real property damage such as fire.

In the area of home owner’s insurance, there is often controversy over what is known as flood insurance. Home owners should not assume that their policy covers damages due to flooding. This is often assumed by home owners and can lead to severe losses should a flooding event occur. The only way to know if you are covered for flooding is to ask the direct question to your insurance company and to read what is in the insurance contract. Thousands upon thousands of homeowners have encountered severe financial loss because they assumed they were covered for flood damages when, in fact, they were not.

In addition to personal property insurance there are other types …

business, insurance

Qualities of a Reliable Roofing Contractor

The market is flooded with an excess of roofing companies. It is, hence, very important to take your time when hiring the right professional for your project. It does not matter if what you need is a simple paint job or a complete roof renovation, the contractor you choose to work with must be someone you can fully count on. In this post, we will be looking at the key qualities you need to focus on when choosing a contractor.

Insurance

In case there is an accident, the last thing you want is to be liable. This will happen if the contractor you hired does not carry insurance. To safeguard your finances, make sure your roofing (dakwerken) contractor is insured. He should be able to present the necessary paperwork that shows his insurance policy and worker’s compensation.

Permanent business address

The fact that the contractor you are considering does not have a permanent business office means you will have no way of tracking him down in case of a malpractice. There is also a very good chance that he is not licensed to work in your area. Always ask for the permanent address of a contractor, phone number as well as tax identification number.

Guarantees

Does the contractor offer any guarantee in roof renovation (dakrenovatie)? Guarantees show the contractor has the ability to provide quality services that he is willing to stand behind. Make sure the materials being used has a guarantee from the manufacturers. A good roofer will offer at least a one year warranty on roof installation.

License and permits

There is nothing more risky than working with an unlicensed roofer. He might land you in myriad legal issues. He may also not be able to acquire the necessary permits. Therefore, in all that you do, make sure the contractor you are considering for your roofing needs is licensed.

References

Last but not least, you have to make sure the roofer can deliver what he promises. You will only be able to do this by getting recommendations from friends and reading online reviews. Ask the contractor for references and contact at least three.

If you are in need of professional roofing and roof renovation services in Antwerpen, Dakwerken Apers is one of the best companies you can turn to. With years of experience and an arsenal of modern roofing equipment, the company is able to work on any roofing project while delivering quality and durable services. Dakwerken Apers works with some of the most competent roofers in the country.…

business, money

Facts about Commercial Debt Collection

Debt collection is not all the same.  In fact, commercial debt collection is vastly different from consumer or retail debt collection.  It is important for business owners to understand the difference and gain an advantage over their competitors.

Commercial Debt Collection vs. Consumer Debt Collection

Commercial debt collection is business-to-business debt collection as it involves the collection of debt from a business on behalf of a business and is not only procedurally different in many ways from consumer debt collection; it is also governed by different rules and guidelines.

Commercial Debt Collection Laws

Although some states have their own laws that define whether or not they make a distinction between the two, commercial debt collection, unlike consumer debt collection is exempt from most federal debt collection laws, as those laws deal specifically with consumer or retail debt collection.  Because of this important distinction, commercial debt collection can allow for a much more comprehensive approach to collecting debts that were incurred by a business, including the use of alternative debt collection tools, such as private investigators and more.

Commercial Debtors vs. Consumer Debtors

Commercial debtors are businesses or business owners that owe a debt as compared with an individual consumer or retail customer.  As a business or business owner owing money to another business, the reason or reasons for delaying or avoiding payment can be similar to a typical consumer owing a debt, such as, lack of available funds, a belief that they can get away without paying, or a belief that they can leverage their relationship as a client/customer to delay or avoid paying, however, the motivation to pay and avoid consequences for the business they are responsible for makes collecting debt from a business much different.

Commercial Debt Collection Agencies

Commercial debt collection agencies typically handle a wide variety of industries.  Therefore, that agent must understand not only common business procedures but also those within each specific industry that the agency’s clients fall within.  Therefore, your typical commercial collection agent will have a great deal of experience and background in dealing with businessmen and businesswomen, as compared with consumer debt collectors who deal mostly with retail customers.  Some of the traits of an experienced commercial debt collector will include tact, professionalism and a unique understanding of what motivates businesses to pay their debts.

Commercial Debt Collection – Resources:

Commercial Debt Collection Agency

Commercial Debt Collection Agencies…

business

Traditional approach to Capital Structure

Traditional approach is an intermediate approach between the net income approach and net operating income approach. According to this approach.

(1) An optimum capital structure does exist.

(2) Market value of the firm can be increased and average cost of capital can be reduced through a prudent manipulation of leverage.

(3) The cost of debt capital increases if debts are increases beyond a definite limit. This is because the greater the risk of business the higher the rate of interest the creditors would ask for. The rate of equity capitalization will also increase with it. Thus there remains no benefit of leverage when debts are increased beyond a certain limit. The cost of capital also goes up.

Thus at a definite level of mixture of debts to equity capital, average cost of capital also increases. The capital structure is optimum at this level of the mix of debts to equity capital.

The effect of change in capital structure on the overall cost of capital can be divided into three stages as follows;

First stage
In the first stage the overall cost of capital falls and the value of the firm increases with the increase in leverage. This leverage has beneficial effect as debts as debts are less expensive. The cost of equity remains constant or increases negligibly. The proportion of risk is less in such a firm.

Second stage
A stage is reached when increase in leverage has no effect on the value or the cost of capital, of the firm. Neither the cost of capital falls nor the value of the firm rises. This is because the increase in the cost of equity due to the assed financial risk offsets the advantage of low cost debt. This is the stage wherein the value of the firm is maximum and cost of capital minimum.

Third stage
Beyond a definite limit of leverage the cost of capital increases with leverage and the value of the firm decreases with leverage. This is because with the increase in debts investors begin to realize the degree of financial risk and hence they desire to earn a higher rate of return on equity shares. The resultant increase in equity capitalization rate will more than offset the advantage of low-cost debt.

It follows that the cost of capital is a function of the degree of leverage. Hence, an optimum capital structure can be achieved by establishing an appropriate degree of leverage in capital structure.…