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Monthly Archives: February 2013

Using law firm accounting to help your law firm start-up grow

There always seems to be room for one more law firm in our world today and starting up your own law firm out of your own home, or as a small business, is certainly a viable business idea. There are some concerns and things to think about, like there are in any business, but it is best to be aware from the start of the law firm accounting concerns your business will need to manage.

First of all, there are the taxes. The home office deduction allows you to deduct a portion of your mortgage or rent and related costs as it is used for the business, based on the amount of space used. The self-employment tax is the social security and medicare taxes that businesses traditionally deducts from their employees and contributes extra on their behalf. If there is just you working for yourself, you are both employee and employer and have to pay both portions. It is usually estimated on anticipated income, and adjusted the next year if you are making more or less than expected. The benefits are the deductions. In your law firm accounting practices, almost everything can be a business related expense.

Law_Firm_Accounting_270220131205Another law firm accounting expense is insurance. Malpractice insurance or responsibilities can be very expensive. Coverage and the costs depend on the location of the firm, the type of firm and the age and experience of the lawyers. California law does not require malpractice insurance however you may want to have some protection. If you are working out of your own home, consider that strangers, as well as clients, may appear at any time. You may want to carry extra home insurance.

Business development costs such as advertising, web sites and networking, meetings that may be too large for your home will require management, and so will the operating expenses. These kinds of things are the specific paper flow, management and law firm accounting concerns you can expect and should, if possible, hire someone to handle them. You will need to manage things like income, expenditures, billings and reimbursements. Although time consuming, it is manageable with the help of spreadsheets and specialized computer programs. You will require the full range of technology to manage your business. Computers, wireless networking, cell phones, faxes and printers, data storage and paper storage will be expected and necessary to ensure full capabilities.

Small business law firm accounting lives or dies on the basis of cash flow and collections and is concerned more with cash accounting, than with accruals. Cash accounting is based mainly on a money-in and money-out method. You will need to have enough cash to support the business through the dry spells and make sure all the above mentioned concerns are taken care of. That is, the rent, taxes, utilities, equipment, insurance and purchases. However, after all that, there should still be enough room for the biggest expense – the lawyer’s salary, including set amounts for savings and retirement. Don’t forget the main purpose for this business.

This article was written by Rickie Chico, on behalf of RBZ, LLP, offering specialized consulting, tax, and accounting services to the legal profession. To know the responsibilities of an accountant, you may visit Wiki.answers.

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Posted by on February 27, 2013 in Accounting

 

Exercising with Online Workout Videos

Finding time to go to the gym can be challenging. For most people, once they’re at the gym, they find it fairly easy to get in the zone and really make the most of their workout, but it’s packing a gym bag, getting in the car, driving, and having to deal with a locker room full of sweaty strangers that tends to turn people off of going to the gym. In the past, some people resorted to purchasing and watching workout videos in their own homes in order to get their exercise; however, many of these exercise videos were expensive, and eventually you would get tired of them, your body would get sued to them and stop responding as effectively, or they would simply become outdated as new information and research one exercise emerged. Fortunately, there are now many online workout videos available, allowing you to work out in your own home, without being stuck with the same videos all the time.

Workout_Videos_260220131100There are a variety of sources for online workout videos, but your best bet is to get them from a reputable gym or personal trainer’s website, making it less likely that you will encounter amateur or experimental workout videos. Some of these videos will be free, while others will charge you. Some people default to the free ones, but don’t disregard the videos you have to pay to view or subscribe to. Often these videos are of a superior quality, and contain excellent information. Besides that, paying for a monthly workout video subscription service is still a lot cheaper than paying for a gym membership or personal trainer.

One of the great things about online exercise videos is that they allow you to change things up whenever you want to or feel you need to. You won’t have run all the way out to a department store to buy the latest workout DVD if you get bored of the one you are currently using. Instead, you will just have to select a different video to watch. This is where video subscription services come in handy – they often give you access to an entire library of workout videos, covering a variety of different exercise styles, workout lengths, and skill and intensity levels. You can choose a new video on a whim without having to go out of your way at all, and if you don’t like the video, you won’t have paid anything extra for it if you are using a subscription service, so you won’t have lost anything by trying it out. For this reason, online workout videos are a great way to get out of your comfort zone and try something new.

Exercise is such an important part of your life, and you should never let your aversion to going to the gym get in the way of maintaining a healthy and balance lifestyle. Online workout videos allow you to enjoy the benefits of working out, without ever having to leave the comfort of your living room.

This article was written by Rebbecca Jankoff, on behalf of GymRa, offering you online assistance to remain physically fit. To know about aerobic exercises, you may visit Wikipedia.

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Posted by on February 26, 2013 in Health

 

Giving a Wine Gift Basket

Giving wine as a present is very common, whether it’s a solo bottle or a wine gift basket, people enjoy receiving it as much as they enjoy giving it. Wine is the perfect gift because it’s simple and available in a wide variety, as well as being easy to wrap. All this considered, the most important thing about wine is not that it is a great gift but rather that it promotes socializing.

Alcohol has always brought people together from religious ceremonies to celebrations and even times of mourning. The ability of alcohol to inhibit innate desires to withdraw or observe, allows people to participate and feel free to contribute to a conversation without judgment.  Of course, without moderation alcohol can be a bad influence but more often than not, wine and other alcohol is just a staple with a meal or at a party with family and friends.  Giving a wine gift basket can be very generous as wines vary from very inexpensive to outrageously priced but they are generally just thoughtful, useful presents that you know will be used and appreciated.

Great options for a red wine gift basket might be:

•    Cabernet Sauvignon: Spicy and fruity, Cabernets pair well with everything from flavorful entrees to rich deserts.

•    Pinot Noir: Dark and fruity this is one red wine that pairs well with white meats as well as red meats and fish – especially those which have been barbequed

•    Merlot: This wine can have a variety of flavors from fruits to vegetables and even herbs. This wine pairs well with most foods, even ones not typically eaten with wine, such as pizza.

•    Shiraz: The perfect red for spicy foods such as Indian or Mexican cuisine.

•    Syrah: Full-bodied and sometimes tart, this is a great wine for lamb and stew lovers alike.

Great options for a white wine gift basket include:

•    Pinot Grigio: This full bodied, citrus flavored wine is perfectly suited to fish.

•    Sauvignon Blanc: Often a smoky tasting wine, its at its peak with vegetables, fish and even curry.

•    Chardonnay: This earthy warm flavored wine tastes best with mushrooms or roasted dishes such a roast chicken.

•    Riesling: This mineral tasting and often sweet wine is best with salads and pork dishes.

A great wine gift basket should include a broad range of flavors that will pair with almost any dish you can imagine. A mix of red or white wines in one basket is a nice way to give someone the opportunity to expand their palate but an entirely red or white basket is also great. A wine gift basket should appeal to a person’s preferences so if they don’t drink white wine, don’t give them any.

A wine gift basket is a simple and easy gift to put together for a friend, co-worker or loved one. Despite the ease of creating one, it’s a gift that will be enjoyed and appreciated, regardless of price-point. These baskets can be given on any occasion or for no reason at all. Everyone enjoys a good bottle of wine.

This article was written by Selene Gerdsen, on behalf of Vampire.com, Inc, offering you the widest range of the best wines. For more information on organic wine, you may visit Wikipedia.

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Posted by on February 25, 2013 in Shopping

 

Online Preschool Games for Kids Creates Inquisitive Minds

Computers should never be used as a substitute parent; however, they are perfect for online preschool games for kids, especially because parents can be interactively involved with them too. What makes online educational games even better is that the parents don’t even have to be in the same house, city or country as the child to play with them. This is exciting, particularly for parents who are overseas working or fighting to protect their country.  Long gone are the days that they can only hear about how their children are doing. They can actually watch their child learn, while they play games online with them. As well, online preschool games for kids are available whenever they are needed, and parents don’t have to adhere to a strict schedule of a brick and mortar classroom setting.

Another great thing about online preschool games for kids that are played online is that they are pure fun, while at the same time giving children a profound education. This is also incredibly rewarding for parents when they know that their children are exercising their minds when they have a household chores to do, like throwing in a load of laundry. If the parent sits down and explores the game first with the child, then they know exactly what their child is learning.

Online_Preschool_Games_for_Kids_250220130856Online Games for Kids – Preparing Them for School

A child’s preschool years are the perfect time to set the groundwork for all the years they will spend at school. Online preschool games for kids online help to prepare kids so they are on par when they start kindergarten, and give them a good strong foundation to get them through to graduation, and then college.

Learning Numbers

There is a lot more involved with learning numbers than just seeing them and knowing what they are. Online preschool games for kids help children grasp the actual concept of the numbers by introducing them to counting and other aspects.

When kids play preschool games to build math skills, they learn how to:

•    Count objects
•    Practice simple math functions
•    Recognize numbers when they see them written down

Learning  the Alphabet

Being able to recognize letters, prepares kids for when they start learning to read in school. Online preschool games for kids teach them:

•    The alphabet
•    How words are sounded out
•    Upper and lower cases, and how they are related to each other

Learning about Science

Kids are born being curious about the world, so it’s never too early to teach them how things work. Science oriented online preschool games for kids give them a better understanding of their environment for when they start school. Activities, projects and games teaching them about science are a lot of fun for both the kids, and the adults, making it a perfect bonding exercise.
Getting children ready to go to school is an important task that is made easy with online preschool games for kids. These fun, interactive activities set the tone for them to be inquisitive about education. Learning all about numbers, the alphabet and science set the stage for their entire educational career.

This article was written by Koralee Philips on behalf of Chalk Preschool, an online preschool enabling your child to experience a hands-on learning at home. To know about the pros and cons of sending your kids to preschool, visit educationbug.org

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Posted by on February 25, 2013 in Education

 

Quashing the Myths About Domestic Adoption

In the United States there are thousands of babies placed for adoption annually. The fees involved are not exorbitant, and exist only to cover costs such as legal consultation. Adoption agencies exist to help with the process.  For anyone wanting to create a family, adoption is the best alternative. When it comes to domestic adoptions, in the court of public opinion there are many stereotypes and misconceptions. In fact, they are surprisingly well established in society. For most people, this type of adoption is painted as:

•         Prospective adoptive parents have to wait five years or longer to adopt a baby born in the same country.
•         They have to pay out thousands of dollars.
•         They constantly live in fear that the mother will return to take the back the infant, or child.
•         Children that are adopted are riddled with identity and behavioral issues.
•         The bond between baby and adoptive families are not as strong as the birth family. However, domestic adoptions continue to be quite common in the United States.

Unrelenting Myths
Due to the movies and sensationalist news stories, domestic adoptions are depicted unfavorably. For example, adoptive parents are commonly asked how much their child cost. Others are often asked if they are fearful that the birth mother will try to take them back. Basically, these questions wouldn’t be asked, if the public had more knowledge of the subject.

Domestic_Adoptions_250220130836Myth: There aren’t any infants being placed for adoption in the United States.
Truth: According to the Alexandria National council for adoption, it is estimated that there are about 20,000 infants placed for adoption yearly in the U.S. This is more than the approximate 19,000 international adoptions.

Myth: Domestic adoptions involve endless wait times and exorbitant costs.
Truth: Typically the wait time is one to two years. As well, in domestic adoptions, fees are not as staggering as they are believed to be. They can range from $4,000.00 – $10,000.00 and incidentally, the fees involved in adoption are to pay for costs such as legal consultation and counseling – not buying a baby – which is illegal. Every aspect of domestic adoptions is regulated by state laws and reviewed by a judge.

Myth: The birth parent can return and take back babies involved in domestic adoptions.
Truth: Despite the highly-publicized cases of Baby Jessica and Baby Richard, that by the way, the father in both adoptions didn’t consent; less than 1% of domestic adoptions end up being contested in the courts.

Myth: Birthmothers are usually troubled teenagers.
Truth: According to adoption professionals, a large number of birth mothers are over 18. Some mothers, and young couples, are finding it difficult nowadays to raise their first child and they lack confidence in being able to handle two children. So they opt for domestic adoptions.

Myth: Birthmothers who place their babies up for domestic adoptions don’t care about them.
Truth: They love them very much. This is why they know that they are not ready to be a parent, and want to give their infants a good home.

Myth: The adopted child will grow up troubled in cases of domestic adoptions.
Truth: The most harmful myth about domestic adoptions is that children who are adopted will grow up to be unreasonably troubled emotionally, and developmentally. According to a study done by the Minneapolis based Search Institute “Growing up adopted,” it was discovered that adoptees are better adjusted than adolescents raised by their birth parent(s).
As well, the adoption study found that teenage adoptees are extremely attached to their adoptive parents.

Domestic adoptions are common in the United States. Adoption agencies exist solely to simplify the process, for the adoptive parents, birth parents and the infant being placed for adoption. Their main goal is to create families.

This article was written by Koralee Philips on behalf of AdoptHelp, a full service domestic adoption center specializing in both independent and collaborative adoptions. To know the pros and cons of adoption, visit eHow.com.

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Posted by on February 25, 2013 in Adoption

 

Don’t Neglect the Training on Your New Magento POS

Selecting the right Magento POS software system is an important decision for your business. After all, choosing the wrong POS software system will be an expensive, repetitive headache for all concerned. But after you spend time to research your POS needs and decide the right one for you, don’t make the mistake of not learning to use it to its full potential. Magento POS software is more than just a cool cash register. It’s features and benefits can save you time and money, but not if you do not take the time to understand it and make sure that all the users of the system are trained.

Magento_POS_230220131145Everything is improved with training. Familiarization goes a long way towards reducing the intimidation that a multi-faceted piece of software can instill in its users. Magento POS software is indeed multi-faceted. It can do more than handle sales and inventory. It stores customer information, employee information and product information; it can manage a variety of payment methods, back orders and integrates easily with all departments, including the online store. Today’s POS systems can even suggest sales to customers, keep track of past orders and allow direct marketing to individual customers. So there is a lot to the training. However, that being said, the training shouldn’t take too long, but it should be complete.

To avoid overwhelming all involved, try to offer the training in stages. Begin with an overview of the system before it is installed and follow that up with a more thorough training after installation. You should plan on a few days altogether, depending on the size of the store involved. POS training will take place in store, or video training may be available. It shouldn’t take much longer than an hour or two for the front-of-house staff who will be handling the transactions. However, extra time will be needed for the management staff who will be handling the purchasing, receiving and reporting work.

Keep the training going and don’t get overwhelmed by trying to do it all at once. Allow people to come back to it later with a fresh mind. It’s a good idea to do constant refreshers after one month and then again after six months. This way you can address questions that may come up. Getting to know the software in stages gives the retailer and the employee’s time to really learn how to handle all of its features. Once the managers really get to know it, the advanced features of Magento POS software will be a business asset beyond a cash register’s wildest dreams.

One more important thing that everybody involved needs to do diligently is back up. It’s not the time consuming, storage nightmare that it used to be, but it still needs to be done and emphasized in the training. Backups are easy to do on-line, or with a portable back up system. They will protect the data against fires, thefts, floods and computer crashes. When you put a lot of care and attention into the purchase of your Magento POS software, you want to be sure that it the operators work as efficiently as the operation.

This article was written by Susan Hofforth on behalf of MicroBiz, providing industry standard Microsoft operating system for retailers worldwide. To know more about point of sale software visit, wiseGEEK.com

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Posted by on February 23, 2013 in Business

 

Experience Winter as Never Before with Ice Sculpture

Isn’t it time that you got out and experienced something brand new? There are millions and millions of people around the world that have been lucky enough to ‘ooh’ and ‘awe’ in sheer delight as they have walked or rode through amazing and artistically designed giant ice sculptures. There is nothing more exciting than getting to truly experience a real winter wonderland. People rave about the amazing experience they have had after being to the gigantic, perfectly carved wonderland with huge pieces of large ice sculptures that cover 15,000 – 20,000 square feet. Each attraction is so large that approximately 28 days to a month is needed to construct each attraction. They are always so spectacular that they bring people from all around, far and wide.

With every step taken in the giant size world ice attraction coming your way, you may get a spine tingling thrill at the pure and authentic frozen, cold pieces of art that are designed in perfection replicating buildings, animals, people, and places. The attractions at heights topping 40 feet are indescribable, as they peer down with impressive and intricate details. The electrifying LED light show magnified from within the ice creations are is exciting and fun to watch. Guests are always provided with large parkas to wear throughout the time spent in the wonderland of ice sculptures ensuring that the entire ‘winter’ experience can be comfortable had by each guest.

Ice_Sculpture_220220131634

Everyone enjoys the extravagantly detailed, chiseled pieces of ice sculpture in the park, from families with children, to couples, friends, and individuals. It really doesn’t matter whether you are alone or not, you are going to leave STUNNED. The multi-colored, beautifully created ice world never fails to leave visitors simply left in awe as they are leaving. The ice attractions bring people from all over, time and time again. While, in many countries, ice festivals, ice parks, ice castles, and other gigantic ice displays pop up annually or at common locations, it is not often in the United States that a magical ice kingdom comes to town. The large snowy, ice world with extraordinarily chiseled sculptures on display will leave you speechless. So, it goes without saying that if one is in your area, you should definitely start gathering the hats, gloves, and scarves.

Ice_Sculpture_220220131635

A team comprised of 40 artisans takes their time carefully, designing, and creatively putting up the entirely chiseled ice world. Recently, Gaylord Resorts in Dallas, TX; Nashville, TN; Orlando, FL; and Washington, D.C. all held ICE! Shows there lasted for 45 days in each of the 4 resort locations. More than a million visitors experienced the winter wonderland comprised of 2,000,000 pounds of multi-colored, opaque, and transparent sculptures of ice created on site in a portable ice factory. The exhibit of larger than life ice sculptures is spectacular in 3D. There is no room for doubt about whether you will enjoy it or not, because it is the most exciting event you will attend for years! Never miss out on the opportunity to go to a large ice attraction, because you will have an amazing and wonderful time. Once you get there and lose your first breath, you will understand what the big fuss is all about. The memories you will walk away with from your ice attraction experience will last a lifetime.

This article was written by Amandalyn Vanover on behalf of International Special Attractions, the company’s ice attractions have been seen by over 5 million  people worldwide and have received universal praise and acclaim. To know about snow sculptures, visit wiseGEEK.com

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Posted by on February 22, 2013 in Art & Craft