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If you're just getting your small business off the ground, you may be trying to figure out how you want to organize. Go big as a corporation or LLC? Go charitable as a non-profit? Or go it alone as a sole proprietorship?

One of the most popular options for small businesses, due to its simplicity and lack of formal filing requirements, is the partnership. Here are five reasons a partnership might work for your small business:

Companies, especially small businesses, can operate in a constant state of flux. As your business grows and shifts, it may require a different corporate structure. Maybe your partnership now needs to be an LLC, or your LLC needs to sell shares as a corporation. (As entrepreneurs and optimists, we don't often think about our businesses moving in the other direction.)

But if you've already incorporated, can you change your incorporation status? And if so, how?

So you've weighed the pros and cons of incorporation and you've decided to take the next step and form your small business as an LLC. As you move down your LLC to-do list, you see: "File your LLC's Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State office in your state."

Wait, what are articles of organization? And how are they important to your business? Here's a quick background and a few tips on writing and filing your LLC's articles of organization.

Congratulations! It looks like your Etsy business is booming. Sales are so high you're considering getting a partner or even hiring employees.

However, before you do any of that, have you incorporated your business? Do you need to?

For business owners, incorporating a business can have tax benefits and ensure limited liability, but it can also be a hassle. Here are the pros and cons of incorporating a business:

The large cash deposits smell like marijuana, so some of the businesses are spraying the cash with room freshener or perfume to hide the marijuana smell. ... The banks are even more suspicious when they have a person trying to deposit a large cash deposit that smells like perfume.

That's Colorado State Senator David Balmer, describing how the state was ill-prepared for a booming recreational marijuana industry. For all the talk about a tax windfall from legalized and regulated pot sales, one not-so-minor detail had been left out: How will marijuana businesses bank their money?

As one of the first states to legalize recreational marijuana sales, Colorado is a valuable test case for pot banking -- both in terms of early missteps and possible ways forward for a burgeoning but legally tenuous economy.

Small Business 101: What Is 'Equity' in a Company?

As you know, starting and operating a business takes money. And one of the many tough decisions business owners must make is whether that money should come from debt or from equity.

Most people are probably familiar with debt, whether from credit cards, car loans or home mortgages. A business loan is no different: You borrow money in exchange for the promise to repay it under agreed-upon conditions. Loans allow a business owner to maintain complete control over a business, but also require regular payments regardless of how the business is doing; they also often require a business owner to put up personal assets as collateral. That's why some business owners decide to raise business capital by securing equity investments in their company.

But what is equity?

Top 3 Legal Tips for Freelancers

With the job market tighter than ever, more and more Americans are turning to freelancing as a way to put their skills to use.

According to freelance worker advocacy group the Freelancers Union, a recent survey found that 53 million Americans are freelancing, working as independent contractors for clients as a "small business" of one. But along with unique benefits -- such as scheduling flexibility, being able to choose the projects you work, and being your own boss -- there are also several legal issues that freelancers in particular should be aware of.

Here are three legal tips for freelancers to follow:

"Public benefit corporations" may sound like charitable organizations, but they're actually a great way for small businesses to make a difference while staying in the black.

Take the Curious Iguana bookstore as an example. It opened last September in Frederick, Maryland, under the state's benefit corporation statute, choosing to hold itself to strict standards of charitable giving, environmental impact, and employee welfare, reports Southwest: The Magazine.

Where else is this type of corporate structure available, and what are the benefits of your small business becoming a "public benefit corporation?"

Small business owners who incorporate may wonder if their company is considered a "closely held corporation," especially in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's recent Hobby Lobby decision.

As you probably know, closely held corporations like the craft-store chain Hobby Lobby are now eligible for an exemption from Obamacare's contraceptive mandate, so knowing the distinction can have real legal consequences.

So what exactly is a closely held corporation?

How Did Hobby Lobby Win at the Supreme Court?

At the center of today's U.S. Supreme Court opinion in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby are three family-owned businesses: Hobby Lobby, Mardel, and Conestoga Wood Specialties.

The businesses were ultimately successful in their suits to avoid providing post-conception contraception to employees as mandated by Obamacare (aka the Affordable Care Act), Reuters reports.

How did these businesses prevail in front of the nation's highest court? Here's an overview of the three-step legal analysis that won their case: