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Company law in context
Company law in context

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3.3 Sole traders

3.2.1 What is a sole trader?

If you were to set up a newsagency business on your own as described in Activity 2, you would be a sole trader. Often this is described as being ‘self-employed’. You would be the ‘owner’ of the business. Whilst other people might be involved in your business (for example, as employees or suppliers), it would nevertheless be your business.

But it follows from what we saw in Activity 2 that being the ‘owner’ of the business involves you in a lot more than owning things. You would be the person who has all of those relevant legal relationships, rights, obligations, statuses, permissions, etc. Some of those are to do with owning things. Many are not. You are owner, buyer, seller, employer, debtor (i.e. you owe someone money), creditor (i.e. someone owes you money), contractor, tenant, taxpayer, licence holder, and perhaps a host of other things too.