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The deals, the crowds, the lines, the inventory, the staff, the website, and even the credit card swipers. Every small business owner wants that Black Friday bump, but is your store ready for the rush?

If you're planning a big sale, whether online or at your store, you should also do your best to avoid any customer lawsuits this holiday season. Here are a few tips on prepping your small business for Black Friday:

Doing business online means you can reach your customers anywhere. But it also means that your customers can come from anywhere, and some of those "wheres" have different laws that apply to doing business online.

One of those "wheres" is Delaware, and one of those laws is DOPPA: the Delaware Online Privacy Protection Act. DOPPA goes into effect on January 1, 2016, but your small business might need to start gearing up now. Here's what you need to know about Delaware's new online privacy law:

Legal Tips for Hiring a Secret Shopper

A secret shopper is a person employed by a manufacturer or retailer to pose as a customer and evaluate the quality of service. The shopper offers you a view of your business from the consumer's perspective.

Given their secret nature, workers will not treat them differently from other customers. That can be a good or a bad thing, depending.

Can I Stream Personal Music Playlists in My Business?

Music listening has changed a lot in the last decade. We don't buy albums, we buy songs, and some of us buy no music at all, subscribing to music streaming services instead.

The streaming services -- Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, and others -- allow listeners to hear whatever songs they want in whatever order. The world of music is the listener's oyster ... more or less. Meaning, you can share your playlists at a party but not in a commercial venue.

When Does My Business Need In-House Counsel?

You need in-house counsel when calling your outside counsel becomes inefficient. Maybe you are spending too much on fees and having an employee makes more sense. Or maybe your business is growing and you just need a trusted counselor to talk to whenever issues arise -- say, someone who doesn't charge you by the minute.

There are many reasons that you might want a lawyer on hand. But of course hiring another employee is always a serious consideration and this one is particularly important. Your in-house lawyer has to be able to do all kinds of things and switch hats with ease.

Are small businesses great places to work because they stay out of legal trouble? Or do they stay out of legal trouble because they are great places to work?

This might be a chicken and the egg conundrum, but either way, you want your small business to be a great place to work and you don't want any lawsuits. Here are ten ways to make that happen:

Can I Use Personal Assets for Running My Business?

Do not mix business and personal assets. Protect yourself by keeping the two separate and both aspects of your life will be better for it.

You'll limit liability and improve organization by making legal and financial distinctions. This will make you more efficient, whether doing business or engaged in personal pursuits.

More and more small businesses are becoming more and more environmentally-friendly these days. And with all the advances in sustainable sourcing, energy efficiency, and reuse and recycling, going green is easier than ever.

Not only is it easy, but it might also boost your bottom line. Between grants, tax breaks, and customer goodwill, a small investment in green business practices could mean bigger returns in the future.

No one likes to be sued, especially a small business. Thoughts of bad publicity and lost sales already keep entrepreneurs up at night, let alone when they have civil liability attached. But in this day and age, getting sued may be inevitable. So it's dealing with a lawsuit that becomes important.

Obviously, your first steps after your business is sued are crucial, so make sure you make them count.

Should My Business Buy a Car?

Whether your business should own a car depends on what you do and how you plan to use the vehicle. Getting a company car is a big decision. It means added expenses and liability issues, but it can also be convenient and have tax advantages.