Small Business Act of 1958 Law and Legal Definition

The Small Business Act of 1958 was passed for the benefit of small business concerns. The purpose of the Act can be categorized into the following:

to aid, counsel, assist, and protect the interests of small-business concerns in order to preserve free competitive enterprise;

to insure that a fair proportion of the total purchases and contracts or subcontracts for property and services for the government be placed with small-business enterprises,

to insure that a fair proportion of the total sales of government property be made to such enterprises, and

to maintain and strengthen the overall economy of the Nation.

Pursuant to the Act, the federal government through Small Business Administration (SBA) should aid and assist small businesses to increase their ability to compete in international markets by enhancing their ability to export, by facilitating technology transfers, by enhancing their ability to compete effectively and efficiently against imports, by increasing the access of small businesses to long-term capital for the purchase of new plant and equipment used in the production of goods and services involved in international trade, by disseminating information concerning state, federal, and private programs and initiatives to enhance the ability of small businesses to compete in international markets; and by ensuring that the interests of small businesses are adequately represented in bilateral and multilateral trade negotiations. Further, the federal government should aid and assist small business concerns which are engaged in agriculturally related industries with the financial assistance programs under the Act. In addition, the federal government must:

aid and assist victims of floods and other catastrophes, and small-business concerns which are displaced as a result of federally aided construction programs; and

assist disaster victims under disaster loan program

assist women entrepreneurs to vigorously promote the legitimate interests of small business concerns owned and controlled by women;

assist women entrepreneurs to remove the discriminatory barriers that are encountered by women in accessing capital and other factors of production; and

assist women entrepreneurs to require that the government engage in a systematic and sustained effort to identify, define and analyze those discriminatory barriers facing women and that such effort directly involve the participation of women business owners in the public and private sector partnership.

In Otis Steel Products Corp. v. United States, 161 Ct. Cl. 694 (Ct. Cl. 1963), the court observed that “The Small Business Act, 15 U.S.C.S. § 631, was passed for the benefit of small business concerns. The award of a contract to one representing itself to be a small business was a benefit conferred, not a penalty imposed. The award of a contract to one representing itself to be one of those entitled to the benefits of the Small Business Act cannot be set aside at the instance of one receiving the benefit, on the ground that it is not entitled to it. This is a ground available only to the one injured by the error; not to one who benefits by it.”