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3 Equity Tips Every Startup Founder Should Know

Marry in haste, repent in leisure. The founders of The Bachelorette might disagree, but the vast majority of corporate founders would whole-heartedly nod their heads, and have five war stories to back it up.

Division of equity is the leading cause of angst among founders. If you and some co-founders are about to dive into the startup pool, and are wanting to talk equity split, here are a few tips to dodge the equity bullet.

Fun With Crowdfunding, Legally Speaking

You've got a great idea, and you're sure it's going to make it big! Now all you need is money, quite a bit more than you're willing to personally invest, to give this project some legs. Before you start blasting your friends on social media to announce your latest rewards-based crowdfunding project, here are a few things to consider before posting that Kickstarter campaign.

As 3D printers become better and more affordable (there are quite a few models under $500), more and more entrepreneurs become interested in how they can contribute to their small businesses or provide avenues for brand new businesses altogether. Being able to manufacture products without the same staff, machinery, and space requirements opens all new avenues of productivity and profit.

But those possibilities don't come without risk, especially of the legal variety. Just because you can 3D print something doesn't mean you should, and definitely doesn't mean you won't get sued for it, or worse. So here are three big legal questions about the 3D printing business for you to consider, before you print yourself a lawsuit.

With so much technology at our fingertips, more employees are working from home (and anywhere with WiFi) than ever before. But what if you're thinking of taking telecommuting to the next level, and starting your own business out of your home? Seems simple enough, right?

Not so fast, my friend. Between neighborhood zoning laws and tax deductions, there are quite a few legal considerations to take into account before your home business takes flight. Here are the most important:

Best Places to Start a Business

There are a lot of things to consider when you're starting a business. How will you cover the startup costs? Will your title be "CEO" or "grand master?" How snazzy can your business cards be? And while you may hope to start your business right where you live, you might want to consider moving to a more business-friendly city with lower startup costs and more resources. Cities in Oklahoma, Texas, and North Carolina -- among others -- might be calling your [business] name.

Entrepreneurs are natural self-starters with a belief they can do it all themselves, including all of the incorporation work necessary to start a small business. (And with some of the resources available on the internet, sometimes they might be right.)

But incorporation can be a tricky thing to get right. And if you're starting a nonprofit to do good, make sure you do it well. That may mean hiring an attorney to help you with starting a nonprofit.

You're starting a business because you've got some great, new ideas. So how do you protect those ideas once you're in business?

From intellectual property laws to non-disclosure agreements, there are quite a few legal options for protecting trade secrets. Here's how to know which is the right option for a particular product or idea, and which are right for your startup.

More and more states are legalizing it, meaning there are more and more business opportunities out there when it comes to marijuana. But, as opposed to computer science degrees for coders and engineers, MBAs for small business entrepreneurs, and even wine- and beer-making programs, there are precious few educational opportunities for those make a career in the weed field. (Outside of what you glean from the internet and that burnt out neighbor with a few sickly plants in his closet.)

But as marijuana goes mainstream, some colleges are looking to cash in, including Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Michigan, which began its medical plant chemistry program this semester. So do you need a dank degree in cannabis cultivation?

October is National Women's Small Business Month, and at a time when the news concerning women employees getting equal pay might be depressing, the news concerning women entrepreneurs and small business owners is a bit more hopeful. "National Women's Small Business Month is a time to recognize and applaud the talented, dedicated and driven women whose entrepreneurial spirit helps drive our nation's economy forward," said National Women's Business Council Chair Carla Harris. "Women's entrepreneurship has evolved from a growing trend to an inarguable contributor to the economic success, job growth and innovative backbone of this country."

Indeed, the trends of female small business ownership, funding, and success are on the rise, and hopefully that continues. Here are three other reasons to celebrate women small business owners this month:

No, this isn't some plot from a comic-book villain come to life; a company, that has, up till now, focused on marijuana technology and hemp oil, has purchased the town of Nipton, California for $5 million. The plan is to turn the ghost town, population: 6, into a destination for marijuana tourism.

Now, you may be asking: Marijuana tourism? Excuse me? However, in California's last election, marijuana was legalized for recreational use by adults in the state. This means that, soon, any adult will be able to purchase marijuana, like they would cigarettes or alcohol. As states like Colorado have seen, once marijuana is available for the public to buy, a new industry pops up: marijuana tourism.