Patrick Iturra Report, EIG Asset Manager
Six reasons that limited liability companies have become a popular choice for small businesses.
When you’re starting a new business, you have a lot of choices. You can follow the lead of many large successful companies and form a corporation. But you may also have heard that limited liability companies are suitable for smaller businesses.
Here are six of the main LLC benefits for those thinking of starting an LLC.
1. Limited Personal Liability
If your business is a sole proprietorship or a partnership, you and your business are legally the same “person.” Your business debts are also your debts. And if your business partner or employee is accused of negligence, your assets might be at risk.
An LLC limits this personal liability because an LLC is legally separate from its owners.
LLCs are responsible for their debts and obligations, and although you can lose the money you have invested in the company, personal assets such as your home and bank account can’t be used to collect on business debts. Your assets are also protected if an employee, business partner, or the business itself is sued for negligence.
2. Less Paperwork
Corporations also offer limited liability, but they have to observe specific requirements that may not be well suited to a small, informally run business. For instance, corporations typically must hold annual shareholder meetings, make annual reports, and pay yearly fees to the state. They also tend to have substantial recordkeeping requirements.
In contrast, LLCs don’t have to hold annual meetings and usually are not required to keep extensive records. In many states, LLCs do not need to file annual reports.
3. Tax Advantages of an LLC
LLCs get the best of all worlds when it comes to taxation. LLCs don’t have their federal tax classification but can adopt the tax status of sole proprietorships, partnerships, S corporations, or C corporations.
The Internal Revenue Service automatically classifies LLCs as either partnerships or sole proprietorships, depending on whether they have one owner or more than one owner. This means that LLCs can always take advantage of “pass-through” taxation in which the LLC does not pay any LLC taxes or corporate taxes. Instead, the LLC’s income and expenses pass through to the owners’ tax returns, and the owners pay personal income tax on any profits.
In contrast, traditional C corporations are taxed twice on distributions to shareholders: once at the corporate level and once at the individual level. S corporations avoid double taxation and receive pass-through tax treatment, but not all corporations are eligible.
4. Ownership Flexibility
S corporations enjoy pass-through taxation, but they have several ownership restrictions. For example, they can’t have more than 100 shareholders, can’t include foreign shareholders, and can’t have shareholders that are corporations. LLCs provide pass-through taxation without restrictions on the number and type of owners they can have.
5. Management Flexibility
Corporations have a fixed management structure that consists of a board of directors that oversees company policies and officers who run the day-to-day business. Owners, also known as shareholders, must meet every year to elect directors and conduct other company business.
LLCs don’t have to use this formal structure, and LLC owners have more choices about how they run the business and make decisions.
6. Flexible Profit Distributions
LLCs have flexibility in distributing profits to their owners, and they aren’t required to distribute them equally or according to ownership percentages. For example, two people may have equal interests in an LLC. Still, they may agree that one will receive a more significant share of the profits because they contributed more money or labor in the business’s startup phase.
On the other hand, corporations must distribute profits to shareholders according to the number and types of shares they hold.
An LLC’s flexible and straightforward business structure is perfect for many small businesses. While both corporations and LLCs offer their owners limited personal liability, owners of an LLC can also take advantage of LLC tax benefits, management flexibility, and minimal recordkeeping and reporting requirements.
I can help you start an LLC quickly and easily. Get started by answering a few simple questioners Form.
My Team will assemble your documents and file them directly with the Secretary of State. You’ll receive your completed LLC package by mail.
EIG Asset Manager, I monitor my investors’ property performance and maximize their real estate income. My job involves leading your real estate investment company’s construction, operations, and leasing teams to ensure optimal value for each asset. FALLOW