Keep It Legal! Taking Care Of Business

Now that the quality of shoeing has improved over the last 25 years, this farrier says attention should be shifted to making sure farrier businesses run smoothly...and legally

WHATEVER YOUR PLANS are for the next five minutes, change them. Stop and think about how far your industry has come in the last quarter century.

For younger farriers, this may not be an easy thing. But for veterans, you’ve got to agree—we’ve come a long way. With the birth of the American Farrier’s Association to flourishing state and local organizations to professional trade publications like American Farriers Journal, much has been done to promote continual education for the betterment of the horse.

But one area that may be a bit foggy for some farriers is the responsibilities that come with owning, operating and maintaining a shoeing business.

“With all the information and educational opportunities available today, the concern isn’t so much about the quality of farriers,” says Steve Richardson. “Right now, a major problem lies in the business skills within the farrier community.”

Richardson, a shoer from Elizabeth, Colo., knows how to do things successfully, and perhaps just as important, legally. He says there are certain steps that farriers should take to protect themselves, their businesses and their family. The steps are easy, make sense and can save you time, money and headaches in the future.

Business Problems

“Too many farriers today aren’t running their shoeing business like a business,” Richardson says. “Instead, they’re taking ‘dead money’ or cash and trying to expand their income. I call it ‘dead money’ because if you’re hiding it, you can’t really invest it anywhere where you create a paper trail. It has…

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