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Business Development Services

Starting your own business is an exciting and complicated endeavor that The Law Office of Michael J. Bell, PLLC, can help you with.  Whether it is a Corporation, Limited Liability Company, or a Partnership, we can advise you as to what type of business entity to choose when starting your business.  We will make sure that your business is registered with the appropriate agencies and will help you obtain the proper operating licenses.  We can also help when you are ready to sell your business or if you want to retire.

The Law Office of Michael J. Bell, PLLC, has the knowledge and experience to help you achieve your business goals. We can provide the guidance needed to ensure that it is done effectively and efficiently.

Business Development Services. Group of people having meeting and discussing at the office

Frequently Asked Questions About Business Development Law

What are the different types of business entities?

There are several types of business entities available. The most common types are sole-proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies, limited partnerships, and corporations. Each has its own benefits and drawbacks.

What is the best business entity for me?

There are many factors that go into deciding what business entity is best for you and your small business. Some of the factors that you need to look at are what services you are providing, whether you have employees, how many owners your business will have, do you need investors, and who is going to manage your business.

How can I protect my personal assets from my business risk?

Each business entity has a different type of personal liability protection. It is important to choose the right business entity that will provide you with maximum personal liability protection. Once you decide on what type of entity that you want to form there are strict guidelines that you must follow to protect your personal assets.

What is a sole proprietorship and a partnership?

A sole proprietorship and a partnership are businesses without a formal legal structure that are owned and operated by either one person (sole proprietorship) or by more than one person (partnership). There is no legal distinction between the individual or individuals and the business entity. As a result, the owner or owners are responsible for the liability of the business.

What is a corporation?

A corporation is a legal entity that is owned by its shareholders and is separate from them. That means that the shareholders are shielded from personal liability (except under certain situations). Corporations can act as individuals, in that they can enter contracts, own property, sue and be sued, and are subject to taxes. A downside of a corporation is that they are subject to double taxation. This means that the profits of the corporation are taxed and the distributions to shareholders are taxed. They are complex entities that have a variety of legal requirements to maintain legal corporate status.

What is a limited liability corporation?

A limited liability company, also known as an LLC, has the best attributes of a sole proprietorship and a corporation. The owner or owners are protected from personal liability. It is not as complicated to operate as a corporation is and it is not subject to double taxations as a corporation. A limited liability company can have multiple members (owners).

Can I change from Sole Proprietor to an LLC or another business type to help protect my assets?

You can switch from a sole proprietorship to a Limited Liability Company or a Corporation.  First, you form the new entity and then you switch ownership of any assets to the Limited Liability Company or Corporation.  Finally, you start using the Limited Liability Company or Corporation and stop using the Sole Proprietorship.

Can my business continue when I die?

Your business can continue after you die. You should take proper steps to ensure that your company will continue if you become incapacitated or die. This starts with creating an appropriate estate plan, which would include a will or possibly a trust. You should also leave a detailed plan on what to do with your business in the event of your death. This is called a business continuity plan.

When should I consider a business succession plan?

Much like estate planning, it is never too early to set up a business succession plan. Such a plan should be incorporated into your estate plan. A proper business succession plan ensures continuity of your business for the benefit of your employees, customers and loved ones. It can be used as a guide on how to transfer your business to new owners, how to handle your retirement from the company or provide guidance to your loved ones in the event of your death.

Why is succession planning important for small businesses?

There are several reasons that business succession planning is important. It ensures continuity upon the loss of a key member of the company. It also helps make the transition of ownership run smoothly. Owners, future owners, employees, and customers all benefit when a proper succession plan is created.

Why do I need to worry about incapacity planning?

Incapacity planning is a vital part of estate planning when you are the owner of a small business. A small business usually relies on one person to operate it daily. Without that person, a small business cannot operate. Planning for your incapacity, allows you to appoint a person to legally operate on your behalf if you are not able to. It allows someone to step in and operate your business until you are able to return.

What is a buy-sell agreement?

A buy-sell agreement is a contract between partners of a business on how a partner’s share of the business is transferred if that partner leaves the business or dies. Every business with multiple owners needs a buy-sell agreement. Such an agreement allows for the business to continue uninterrupted upon the exit of an owner.

Do you need legal help or consultance? Contact us now.

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“A big business starts small.”

– Richard Branson