Frequently Asked Questions | What is The NASE | Small Business Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the NASE?

The National Association for the Self-Employed is the nation's leading resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses. Since 1981, the NASE has focused on providing a broad range of benefits to help entrepreneurs and their small businesses successfully compete in an increasingly competitive marketplace, and to drive the growth of this vital segment of the American economy.

The NASE supports the micro-business segment by providing access to benefits and resources that are routinely available only to larger corporations. This puts the smallest businesses on more equal footing with their corporate counterparts.

The NASE offers the self-employed access to focused resources to help their businesses succeed. Through its powerful legislative advocacy program, the organization also offers small-business owners a strong voice on Capitol Hill regarding laws and policies that affect their business. The NASE also offers a full range of benefits - from access to legal services to investment services - at discounted rates.

How does the NASE differ from other small business organizations today?

There are a number of resources small businesses can turn to for help, from the SBA to online resources provided by a number of companies and publishers. However, the NASE is the only association to focus exclusively on the needs of businesses with ten employees or less, or "micro-businesses." With the knowledge and understanding that comes from focusing on this unique segment for over two decades, the NASE is in a unique position to provide the education and support that these business owners need.

What is the support that the NASE offers?

It is the most comprehensive support structure in the marketplace for micro-businesses, and it falls into four basic areas:

Focused 'How-To' Resources.

The NASE offers micro-business owners a wide range of educational benefits and tools to help them run their business.  Members are automatically mailed a copy of the NASE's award-winning bi-monthly member magazine, Self-Employed.  Members can access even more articles and resources online through the NASE's Health Resource Center and Tax Resource Center, among others.  NASE Members also have unlimited access to the NASE's experts to ask tax, finance, retirement and/or operations questions.

Value-Added Benefits.

The NASE provides its members access to a full array of high-value benefits - from legal help to home office insurance to credit cards - all at discounted fees and rates. Through the organization's consolidated buying power, NASE Members receive significant savings on many products and services, from office supplies to website design. Members also receive discounts on travel services, including rental car fees and hotels. Access to a variety of health insurance plans is also available, including major medical, prescription drug, as well as dental and vision plans.

Legislative Advocacy.

Through its legislative outreach initiative, the NASE gives the self-employed a powerful voice on federal legislation affecting small business. Key legislative priorities include:

  • The Economy and Micro-Business
  • Fairness in Tax Compliance
  • Access to Affordable Health Coverage
  • Self-Employment Tax on Health Insurance Premiums
  • Improving Our Health Care System
  • Home Office Deduction Simplification
  • Tax Cuts for Small Business
  • Estate Tax Relief
  • Retirement Security
  • Federal Small-Business Programs
  • Tax-Free Internet

Read more on our Top Federal Legislative Issues in our Advocacy section.

College Scholarships.

The NASE's Scholarship Program provides annual financial scholarships to children and dependents of NASE Members. The NASE's Future Entrepreneur Scholarship is the largest scholarship in the nation devoted to the promotion of entrepreneurship among young people. Over $1.3 million has been awarded since the scholarship program was launched in 1989.

Who governs the NASE?

The strategies and activities of the NASE are overseen and closely managed by a Board of Directors. The Board consists of small-business owners representing a cross-section of micro-businesses, from publishing and agribusiness to accounting and travel services. Board members are intensely hands-on in the association's business planning and practices. The NASE doesn't simply represent micro-business; it is micro-business.

How many members does the NASE have?

Currently, the NASE has over 50,000 dues-paying members, representing approximately 150,000 business owners and employees nationwide.

What is the typical profile of NASE membership?

NASE membership is as varied as the self-employed community itself. But during the association's history, the organization has seen a shift to include more service- and information-based businesses. This shift is reflective of trends in the broader economy. Over time, there also has been a trend toward younger workers entering self-employment, which is a domain that tended to belong more to older workers (who had built up enough capital to go into business for themselves).

What are the most important legislative issues for micro-businesses?

The NASE is a nonpartisan organization, working with policy makers on both sides of the aisle for the betterment of micro-business. Here are the issues that the NASE works on every day in Washington, D.C.:

Self-Employment Tax Deduction on Health Insurance Premiums

Let sole proprietors take a tax deduction on their self-employment taxes for health premium costs, just like every other business.

Tax Gap

The IRS has a right to collect the taxes it is owed. But efforts to increase tax compliance by solely targeting the self-employed are unfair and harmful to our nation’s economy.

Access to Affordable Health Coverage

Health reform proposals such as pooling arrangements, expansion of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), and expansion of Health IT would both improve our health care system and make health coverage more affordable for micro-business.

Health Care Tax Credits

Tax credits could help those without employer sponsored health insurance to purchase coverage for themselves and their families.

Simplifying the Home Office Deduction

Home-based businesses could save time with a standard tax deduction, instead of the complicated calculations required now.

Clarifying the Independent Contractor Definition

When is a contractor an employee? This answer needs to be clarified in the tax code to ensure that small businesses avoid unintentional mistakes.

Retirement Security for the Self-Employed

Pension plans with the micro-business in mind would help as retirement draws near.

Tax Equality for the Self-Employed

Increasing equipment expensing and business meal deductions would help micro-businesses succeed.

Your Voice in D.C.

Are your small business needs drowned out by the giant corporate interests appealing to Congress?  There's strength in numbers, and with the NASE as your champion, your concerns receive their deserved consideration in federal regulations and small business laws.

Partner with NASE Now!

Join today and the NASE's experts, resources, discounts, and influence in D.C. are a click away! Get great information on help starting a business, business plan help, help for small business, and more.

Courtesy of