WelcomeTuesday, February 7th, 2023
Laws and Regulations
The post concerning company vehicles was getting in danger of being sidetracked, so I'll put this topic in a different thread in a more general sense. A side discussion was starting to occur around the application/interpretation of IRS regulations which actually could be expanded a good bit.
A couple of quotes that pertain to the professional practice of Land Surveying from a section of the statutes and regulatory language in my home state:
- A licensee shall not knowingly associate with any person engaging in fraudulent, illegal or dishonest activities.
- The professional engineer or professional land surveyor shall avoid conduct likely to discredit or reflect unfavorably upon the dignity or honor of his or her profession.
- Grounds for denial of licensure and for disciplinary action. (12) Engaged in conduct likely to deceive or defraud the public.
There is a vast number of laws and regulations that a company (corporation or even a sole-proprietor) is supposed to comply with in the daily operations of their company. Some examples might be tax code, business licenses for each city worked in, labor laws, workman's comp insurance, radio licensing for GPS equipment, drone pilot licensing, etc... This list could be pages long.
Surveying can be a bit odd in that folks running the businesses are often not well versed in business. So I think we as a profession have a great potential for violations, other than our standards of practice, to occur from ignorance of the laws pertaining to business practice.
What (if anything) are you doing to make sure that your company is in compliance with whatever laws apply to your business?
Do you ever consider if your choices (made either through lack of knowledge or as an informed decision to ignore a law) could result in consequences to your business, employees, or license?
Quarterly check-ups with our: insurance providers, CPAs, and attorneys.
Our insurance providers seem to keep on top of many of the trends, and then we explore trends/topics with the CPAs/attorneys.
Our insurance folks always have continuing education for business owners, etc. It's kinda nice.
@michigan-left Ever follow up and double check them?
A friend who has a construction company was given some very bad advice from his accountant. Once I pointed it our to him, he pushed the issue and found that the accountant was not correct.
I always am too uptight to not at least do some checking on my own.
All the time.
We value critical thinking and don't usually ask questions we don't already know the answer to, or have a pretty solid understanding of. If it's a gray area question, we tend to avoid those. Making money is great, but keeping it is even better. And there is plenty of money to be made without losing the farm. Risk management gets talked about a fair amount, but it starts at the top and needs to be disseminated down to the FNG hired yesterday. Not everyone has the same role in risk management, but everyone is responsible for their portion.
We too are pretty conservative on both the technical and business side of things, and we're also not out there trying to reinvent the wheel either. We've been doing business for awhile, and not too many surprises pop up unexpectedly. We've been fortunate in the work we do and the professionals we retain. We use them in an advisory role, and will not hesitate to challenge them if something seems off. They work for us. And, to be blunt, we run them through the ringer if necessary, but we also pay a premium for quality. We will never balk at a high price for services, but everyone involved understands that the quality must be there.
Another business owner friend made an off-hand remark one time, and we discussed for a few minutes. His comment seemed way out in left field, but when I inquired with our professionals, they explained why it made sense for him, and not for us.
That's how you really learn to run a business. Talk to people that run a business, or two, or ten. It's scary, expensive, and hard AF, but it's also addicting. And when you get good at it, it can be a lot of fun too.