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Choosing A Legitimate Home Based Internet Business
By Thomas Childs
A search for an Internet business opportunity from one of the major search engines yielded 11,800,000 results. What a staggering number to wade through! The sad fact is that many of these so-called Internet business opportunity vendors represent an opportunity for one person – themselves. While you certainly can find a legitimate and promising Internet business opportunity on the Web, just how do you tell the wheat from the chaff? Here are the most commonly asked questions about the legitimacy of business opportunities, and their answers.
The first question, and the one you should certainly ask, is where you can obtain the company’s pre-sale document of disclosure. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that a business that offers a franchise or a business opportunity must provide prospective buyers with this document. The FTC doesn’t insist that the firms keep these documents available to the public however, so they’re not generally easy to find. 13 U.S. states do keep the franchise papers on file, while 26 states require anyone with a business opportunity to sell file its disclosure statement. These files are available to anyone who wishes to look at them if an appointment is made to review them or make copies right there at the office where they are stored. In California,
the franchise documents are available online.
What potential Internet business opportunity buyers want to know almost as often is where they can find out if complaints have been filed about the company, and the details of those complaints. They also want to know, of course, if the complaints have been resolved.
The answer, unfortunately, is there is not a good database, either through a state or federal agency, local municipality or private organization. The FTC as well as the Better Business Bureau keep track of complaints but it’s quite easy to change business names and locations once complaints stack up. The best protection is the FTC’s franchise rule that requires that firms provide potential buyers with the names, addresses and phone numbers of ten other buyers of this Internet business opportunity. These must be the ten geographically closest to you.
It is imperative for your own investigation into the authenticity and soundness of this internet business opportunity that you call these business people and ask them about the firm they bought. What’s important as well is that you visit each business location, even if at their home. Fraudulent business opportunity sellers can line up a number of friends and family to handle calls about their bogus business success.
Under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act any person who requests it is entitled to any information on the potential Internet business opportunity that the FTC has on file.
Another resource is the Business Franchise Guide, found often in law libraries. This discloses the guidelines of each state and the U.S. federal government on franchisors and business opportunity vendors.
Tom Childs holds an MBA from the University at Buffalo, and is involved with several highly successful internet businesses.
Visit Tom"s "Home Business Success Training Journal" Blog Site: Click Here For Tom"s Blog
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