What issues am I not considering about this potential job working in the US for a friend's overseas business?
I am based in the US. I have a friend overseas who is an entrepreneur with a plan for expanding his small business that involves having a US-based assistant to ship his product. He approached me about my interest and said that the job would involve receiving the (relatively small and lightweight) components of the product from a US manufacturer, compiling them and mailing them out. I would be responsible for placing orders for the components as supplies dwindle, but supplies would be paid for by the business. I would be paid a flat rate per piece plus a small percentage of overall sales through PayPal.
There's always a chance that predictions are wrong, but based on an assessment of his business done by a consultant, my friend said that he believes that at the low end of potential output, I would make about $100-$200 per week for about an hour of work per day (so roughly $14-28 per hour). If this initiative takes off, down the line I could be in a position to quit my current job, which I have been wanting to do.
I am not concerned about the integrity of the offer. My friend has been running his own business for about 10 years, and has faced plenty of challenges, but has a good product that he's invested in and has kept his business going. And he's the kind of friend who is practically family, and I'm close to his extended family, so he has incentives (beyond wanting his business to succeed and his own strong sense of fair play) to treat me well. Based on our discussion, I think he has thought things through thoroughly.
The concerns that jumped to the top of my mind were:
- Time - my schedule is snug as it is, but I think I can find an hour a day at this point (beyond that may be challenging)
- Storage - I don't have much of it at home, but my friend asked me to look into storage units as well
- Taxes - I'm not sure where to begin trying to figure out how I should file and what I should set aside to cover taxes. I'm inclined to do this on my own since I'm expecting it to be a small stream, but if I should seek help, who should I go to (DC-area specific recommendations welcome)?
I'm talking to my friend again early next week and he wants to be able to move on this quickly. What issues am I not thinking about? What questions do I need to be asking? I plan to ask for a contract - what do I need to make sure is in it?
- What issues or challenges would arise from being effectively an independent contractor for a small business on the other side of the world?
- What needs to be in a contract for this business relationship?
- How do I figure out filing and setting aside sufficient money for US taxes on income from a foreign source?