Free Enterprise - The FindLaw Small Business Law Blog

May 2010 Archives

Financial Reform Bill Concerns Some Small Businesses

After the Senate passed a major financial reform bill, some small businesses are concerned that the new oversight will hurt business and create unnecessary red tape. The uncertainty has many small businesses speculating whether they will get caught up in new financial regulation. For now, the speculation is just that, as the bill will face changes in the House of Representatives.

Small Businesses Eligible for 35% Health Care Reimbursement

The passage of the new health care law makes small businesses eligible for health care cost reimbursement. Business owners are wondering how the new law will help them save money and provide affordable health care to their employees. The White House released a fact sheet on last week that offers information on how the new law will work for small businesses. 

Small Businesses Join Challenge to Health Care Law

The National Federation of Independent Business is joining governors and attorneys general in the legal challenge to President Obama's health care plan. The NFIB argues that it is unconstitutional to force Americans to buy health care simply because they are alive. As discussed in a prior post, the legal challenge to the constitutionality of the healthcare reform law is being spearheaded by Florida Attorney General, Bill McCollum.

Rethinking Rebates

The state of New Jersey is considering a measure that would require retailers to charge consumers an after-rebate price, eliminating the requirement for consumers to clip UPC codes, fill out rebate forms, or log on to a a manufacturer's website. The New Jersey rebate law would make the state the third to enforce statewide consumer protection relating to rebates.  

Senate Passes Amendment on Credit Card Swipe Fees

Late last week, the United States Senate overwhelmingly passed an amendment to the in-progress bank reform bill which could change the rules of the road for credit card swipe fees. The amendment would gives the Federal Reserve the ability to monitor and regulate the fees that credit card companies charge merchants and the power to ensure that the rates are "reasonable and proportional to the actual cost incurred."  

NY Lender Pays $26.3 Mil Settlement on SBA Loans

Ciena Capital LLC has agreed to settle fraud claims with the United States Department of Justice for $26.3 million. It is alleged that Ciena Capital and a subsidiary submitted false claims for payment on loans which were made through the Small Business Administration. Ciena Capital, LLC has been in bankruptcy since 2008 and the settlement must be approved by the Bankruptcy Court. 

Pass on Data Pass: Murky Credit Card Tactic Banned

Watch out for the data pass. 

Online credit card rules have changed. If your company operates online, now would be a good time to check to make sure that you comply with the new rules. Visa now requires that all web merchants ask consumers to enter all 16 digits of their credit card number before allowing a purchase. Over the past several years, more than 30 million American consumers have been stuck with unauthorized charges estimated at $1.4 billion for fake travel clubs and other services after shopping at several web sites such as,, and hundreds of other sites.