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Working for Yourself: Law & Taxes for Independent Contractors, Freelancers & Consultants Paperback – October 1, 2004


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Frequently Bought Together

Working for Yourself: Law & Taxes for Independent Contractors, Freelancers & Consultants + Deduct It!: Lower Your Small Business Taxes + 475 Tax Deductions for Businesses and Self-Employed Individuals: An A-to-Z Guide to Hundreds of Tax Write-Offs
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Product Details

  • Series: Working for Yourself: Law & Taxes for Independent Contractors, Freelancers, & Consultants
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: NOLO; 5th edition (October 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141330088X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1413300888
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,879,936 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

As an independent contractor, you are your boss. This is why Fishmanfs book is so important. -- New Orleans Times-Picayune

Could well have been called The Independent Contractor Bible... Don't contract independently without it. -- Leonard Charla, Small Press Magazine

Whether you already work for yourself or are thinking about, Working for Yourself will help make sure it's done right. -- Des Moines Register

About the Author

Stephen Fishman received his law degree from the University of Southern California in 1979. After stints in government and private practice, he became a full-time legal writer in 1983. He has helped write and edit over a dozen reference books for attorneys. He is the author of Software Development: A Legal Guide, Copyright Your Software, The Copyright Handbook, Consultant & Independent Contractor Agreements, Wage Slave No More: Law & Taxes for the Self-Employed, and Hiring Independent Contractors: The Employer's Legal Guide, all published by Nolo.

More About the Author

Stephen Fishman has dedicated his career as an attorney and author to writing useful, authoritative and recognized guides on taxes and business law for entrepreneurs, independent contractors, freelancers and other self-employed people, as well as books on copyright law and the public domain. He is the author of over 20 books and hundreds of articles, and has been quoted in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, and many other publications. He lives in Alameda, California with his wife.

His website is at www.fishmanlawandtaxfiles.com

Customer Reviews

Very informative and easy to read.
missed
If you are thinking about moving to this type of work this book will give you the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Karen E. Koch
I would recommend this book to anyone starting their own business.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

89 of 95 people found the following review helpful By Randy Given on May 5, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a software contractor looking at incorporating. I had looked at LLC options, but some clients require incorporating, so that was ruled out. My best route seemed to be S-Corp. This book answered most of my questions. The "Incorporating Your Business, for Dummies" was pretty good, but not as good as this book. This book has a lot of details and laid some of my worries to rest. It will also save money with your professional team (attorney, accountant) by answering simple, but essential, questions. Definitely worth the money.
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63 of 66 people found the following review helpful By zem on July 7, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After surveying most of the small biz books out there, this is the far and away the best. Fishman claims his focus is on sole proprietors in a service business (in part to not compete with Steingold's Nolo Press book on small biz which isn't nearly as good). Even if you have an inventory based biz, 95% of this book is still extremely helpful. It covers the widest rage of topics and in more depth and with better organization than any other book on the subject. You won't need many other books except maybe something specific for taxes (do not get Nolo's Tax Savy book -- its very superficial; I really haven't found a tax book that I like yet). If your business will be very large and complex (and especially if it will involve other investors, complex financing, employees or IP) also get the Entrepeneur's Guide to Business Law by Bagley and Dauchy.
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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Brent Butler TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 9, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I know that as I type this I'm the low stars for this book. The reason is that I don't think the book quite lives up to its title.

Here's what you get: Generally two paragraphs (and sometimes an example) on a wide variety of topics concerned with owning and running a business. Having owned and run businesses for 30 years, I can tell you from experience that the two paragraphs offered per topic in this book are generally not all you need to know if the topic specifically applies to your business activities.

As a specific example, you get two paragraphs in the book about filing for business use of your home for a home office. Although most of the information in those two paragraphs is accurate, it is woefully short of everything you SHOULD know about filing for business use of your home. In those two paragraphs, the author indicatse that filing form 8829 for business use of your home is more likely to trigger an IRS audit. To my knowledge, that claim by the author is not correct. 8829 is a very matter of fact set of calculations that the IRS has no particular quibble with, unless they should come to believe that you are overstating the percentage of your home used for business purposes. If the figures you submit on that form are accurate and consistent, you have no reason to fear filing it. There are a couple of tips you should know about filing that form to your best advantage vis a vis the power of the deduction. This book makes no mention at all of that, and that information is quite important to the subject of 8829.

However, most of the information given in this book is accurate. It will certainly put you in the right frame of mind to specifically tackle a more in depth research effort.

I would recommend this book to two sets of people.

1.
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47 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Genevieve Chan on May 4, 2004
Format: Paperback
A potential employer asked that I incorporate my freelancing business before they start sending me jobs. I wanted to do some research on the pros/cons of incorporating, what kind of start-ups costs this would entail, and what kind of corporation I should be. At first, the whole process of incorporating sounded like a huge money burden on my part--with filing fees and taxes--but this book has helped me sort out the issues and provided detailed information about the different ways to incorporate--sole proprietorship, LLC, S-corps. Although I haven't yet decided which path I will take, this book has made the jump to freelancing, and self-incorporating, less scary.
Not only do I understand my choices better, but I also now understand the different structures for businesses and their tax responsibilities. Great distillation of information! The copies of tax forms in the back are also a great reference. Highly recommended.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By D. Donovan, Editor/Sr. Reviewer on April 19, 2006
Format: Paperback
Plenty of books impart the basics of how to work independently - but too few include all the legal tips, tricks and traps involved. WORKING FOR YOURSELF: LAW & TAXES FOR INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS, FREELANCERS & CONSULTANTS covers everything from setting appropriate fees and understanding how and when taxes are paid to limiting liability and getting paid. Record-keeping processes are simplified with sample logs and entry advice, chapters on how the IRS defines an independent contractor versus a paid employee are essential keys to keeping independent status, and advice on pricing and insurance offer key strategy-oriented tips and approaches. A 'must' for any who would work independently.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Flynndl on January 15, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased the book since my employer explained that I will become an independent contractor for 2007. The book explained everything about being a contractor and how to stay in line with paying the taxes, how to protect my self employed status, what deductions I can take, and what forms and agreements I should use. I found it very informative and would recommend it to anyone who wants to understand the world of self employment.
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