Legal Business Structures
Choose the Right Legal Structure for your Company
Business structures can vary as widely as the types of businesses that use them. When setting up a business, choosing the right structure can be critical to the success and life of the company.
Sole Proprietor: this is the most traditional form of business, where one simply goes into business in their own name or under a "doing business as" (DBA) trade name. It offers the least protection to the owner of the business but is the simplest to set up.
Partnership: this is another very common form of business ownership. It is created when two or more people or entities come together to do business, and can be the equivalent of a sole proprietorship in terms of its ease of set up and lack of legal protection. However, some jurisdictions have started to create variations on this form of ownership, such as the limited partnership, in an effort to provide some protection to business owners and/or to better define the relationships of the partners.
Corporations: this is a form of business ownership that creates a separate legal entity which is jointly owned by multiple investors. There are two primary forms of corporations: S and C. Each has its own unique advantages and disadvantages as related to raising capital and paying taxes.
Limited Liability Companies: these are a relatively new addition to the forms of business ownership. In simplest terms, it tends to combine some of the best features of partnerships and S Corps, such as ease of organization and pass through taxation.
Articles Related to Business Formation
- What’s in a Fictitious Name?A fictitious name is a pseudonym for a business or person that is often most beneficial in marketing and advertising efforts. Fictitious names are regulated by Florida Statute 865.09 and must be registered with the Division of Corporations and published in a local newspaper. A properly filed and registered fictitious name allows the business or person that owns it to conduct business legally under that name and claims the name so it cannot be easily used by others.
- Legal Needs in Setting up a Successful Construction Company in CaliforniaAre you preparing to set up your own construction company? It is imperative that you have the right structure in place. Here are key things to know about setting up a successful construction company in California.
- Minimizing Debt Transfer When You Purchase a BusinessAre you considering buying a business in California’s Bay Area? If so, it is imperative that you ensure the transaction is properly structured. A well-structured purchase agreement is especially important if the target company has a considerable amount of debt. With the right approach, you may be able to minimize the debt that you take on as part of the transfer. Here, our California attorney for buying a business highlights some of the key things that you should know about minimizing the debt transfer when you purchase a company.
- Apply for Your California Home Health Care License Before Purchasing a Home Health Care CompanyHome health care is a rapidly expanding industry in California. The Employment Development Department (EDD) notes that the home health care industry already generates more than $10 billion in annual revenue in our state. You may be thinking about purchasing a home health care company—either to add to your existing business or to get into the industry. When buying or acquiring a home health care agency in California, it is imperative you understand the licensing requirements. You should apply for your license before you purchase the company.
- Securing Your Medi-Cal License Before You Purchase a California Medical PracticeAre you preparing to purchase or acquire a medical practice in California? It can be a fruitful business decision—but it is crucial that all aspects of the transaction are handled properly. Health care is a highly regulated industry. You need to obtain a Medi-Cal license—and there are certain steps that you should take to help ensure your application is approved in a timely manner. Our Bay Area business law attorney explains why it is so important to secure your Medi-Cal license before you purchase a medical practice in California.
- What Are the Rights of a Minority Shareholder in California?What are the best strategies to assert and protect your rights and interests as a minority stakeholder in a California business or corporation?
- Why Is an LLC Operating Agreement So Important in California?What is the purpose behind an LLC operating agreement and why is this such an important document in an LLC in San Diego and Southern California? In these days of downloading forms from a website and rushing into business most LLCs miss one of the most important issues in the process of forming a business – the operating agreement.
- What Are Corporate Bylaws and a Shareholders’ Agreement?What are the corporate bylaws and the shareholders’ agreement in an S Corporation, C Corporation, Professional Corporation or Management Service Organization or MSO? What protections do they provide? Why is it important for you to thoroughly review these documents during business formation and at regular intervals throughout the life of your corporation?
- Can My Accountant or CPA Draft My Florida Business's Legal Documents?Should you ask your accountant or CPA to draft my legal business documents. In short, no. But equally so you should not have your business lawyer prepare your taxes unless that person is also an accountant or CPA. Occasionally accountants or CPAs try to serve their clients and help them by preparing bylaws for an Inc. or an operating agreement for an LLC or contracts. But those people lack the experience and training of skilled business attorneys and their good intentions often make matters worse.
- Planning for a Transition in Your Florida BusinessBusiness transition planning is preparing for the handover by sale, but-out, or take-over following the demise of the owner. This is accomplished through corporate governance documents like an operating agreement or partnership agreement.
- A Start-up Business Guide for Choosing the Right Type of Business Structure
An HG.org Article guiding start-up businesses when choosing the type of business structure they should form.