Forms of Business Ownership

1162 Words5 Pages
Forms of Ownership There are a number of forms of ownership that the business can take. The main forms are sole proprietorship, partnership, Limited Liability Corporation, corporation and S corporation. There are advantages and disadvantages to each of these forms that will be discussed in this section. A sole proprietorship essentially has the person as the business. In this situation, the proprietor bears all of the risk involved in the business. Business income flows through to the proprietor's personal taxes. For some individuals there are tax advantages, but for many the appeal of the sole proprietorship is its simplicity. The IRS defines a partnership as a relationship existing between two or more individuals who joint to carry on a business. Partners divide income according to their own agreement and that income flows through to their personal taxes. Partners also have a high level of liability for any legal action that befalls the company. Corporations are a different type of business. They are more complex to start because more paperwork is involved and the corporation generally has to be registered at the state level. An ordinary corporation is formed through the articles of incorporation. These corporations are legal entities, and therefore bear legal responsibility. The shareholders of the corporation do not bear legal liability. In addition, corporate income is taxed differently it does not flow through to the owner's personal income tax statements. The
Open Document