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View Diary: It's Time to Expand the Self-Employment Assistance Program (SEA) (14 comments)

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  •  The problem with that is... (0+ / 0-)

    Lots of people would say that this makes it possible to run a business for a year or two, then fold up and enjoy a partially paid vacation at the expense of your fellow taxpayers.  I'm sure some people would, in fact, do exactly that if they could.

    You would probably want to tie it to something that can be measured objectively.  Something like the IRS definition of a "going concern."

    You would also want to require that a business had been a going concern long enough not to have to worry too much about people starting a business just to close it and collect unemployment. Also because the bar to starting your own business is already set too low for some types of businesses and you wouldn't want to encourage any more people who haven't a clue from trying to start their own business.

    You would want business owners to demonstrate that they were actually trying to keep their concern going, just like laid-off employees are required to show they are trying to find another job.

    And finally, you would want to base benefits on something like the IRS definition of a dependent...did the going concern really contribute substantially to supporting the household?  No benefits for a doctor's wife who sells tupperware, or a middle-class teenager who takes on a paper route.  On the flip, you shouldn't have to go totally bust to collect. If you are the lone breadwinner in your family, the fact that your business on the skids is still turning a profit of $2,000 a year is, for all practical purposes, unemployment.

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