Starting a business can be exhilarating. Unfortunately, however, many entrepreneurs and business owners neglect the essentials when it comes to business formation, which can complicate their businesses’ operations and impede their success. Before you launch your start-up or restructure, you need a practical, strategic plan. At Pak Law Offices, we understand the nuances of Arizona business formation law. An experienced Scottsdale AZ business formation lawyer can help you create a strong foundation for your venture.
Identifying the Right Business Structure or Model
Starting a business is becoming increasingly difficult. With so many types of business entities, which entity structure should you choose? If you do not take any action, then you will default to a sole-proprietorship or partnership depending on the number of people who are involved in your business as owners. However, to receive the maximum liability protection for your business, you may need the liability protection afforded by a corporation or limited liability company.
You have worked too hard to accumulate your personal assets. In a business environment where one mishap can expose your personal assets to liability, having the guidance of an experienced business formation lawyer is crucial.
Once you have an idea for a business, you need to decide how it will operate from an organizational perspective. In Scottsdale, you can choose from a variety of business structures:
A business that is owned by single person, operating either under that individual’s name or under a trade name (“dba”). Unless you decide to register a trade name with the Arizona Secretary of State, you do not need to file any special paperwork to create a sole proprietorship. Typically, the business’ income passes through to the owner for tax purposes. However, the owner is also liable for the business’ debts and obligations.
A business owned by two or more individuals who operate under a partnership agreement. While you do not need to establish a formal, written agreement, it is in your best interest to clearly outline each partner’s rights and responsibilities. Again, the partnership’s income passes through to its owners and the business does not pay income taxes. Depending on how form your partnership, all of the partners may be responsible for its liabilities.
Limited Liability Company (LLC)
One of Arizona’s most popular business models, it combines some of the advantages of a partnership with those of a corporation. Members of an LLC are typically shielded from liability, but the business’ income may still pass through to its owners for tax purposes. To create an LLC, you must register with the Arizona Secretary of State and meet certain requirements.
Shareholders of a corporation are typically protected from liability, unless they violate certain rules. However, Arizona treats a corporation as a unique entity which must pay taxes. Shareholders or members must also report their income from the corporation on their personal income tax filings. To create a corporation, you must file paperwork with the Arizona Corporation Commission, draft bylaws and shareholder agreements, and comply with other requirements and state laws.
Claiming Your Business’ Name
Most businesses operate under a trade name or “dba.” As you consider names for your business, you need to consider more than its marketing appeal — there are also legal requirements that you must meet. Once you’ve narrowed your selection of business names down, you should perform a search to ensure that it is not already taken.
Next, you will need to register your trade name with the Arizona Secretary of State. It is also a good idea to consider trademarking or registering your business name, which protects its intellectual property. A business formation lawyer can help you complete this process or refer you to respected intellectual property attorney.
Getting Ready for Your Daily Operations
Running a business takes a lot of planning and preparation. In addition to finding the perfect location, creating a website, and building a customer base, you have to do a variety of important operational tasks. These include:
- Obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS
- Opening bank accounts for your business
- Fundraising to collect needed capital for your startup
- Applying for necessary licenses and permits
- Drafting agreements and documents that outline your business’ policies, procedures, and operations
- Hiring employees and defining the terms of their employment
- Complying with all relevant state, local, and federal laws and regulations
- Purchasing business insurance policies
Working With a Business Formation Lawyer
Business formation can make or break your venture. To help ensure its success, we strongly suggest that you consult with an experienced business formation lawyer.
Our entity formation services include:
- Preparing and filing Articles of Incorporation, Articles of Amendment, Restatement of Articles, Application for New Authority of Foreign Business Corporations, and Annual Reports, publication of the Articles of Incorporation, and preparing Bylaws for your new corporation.
- Preparing and filing Articles of Organization, Notice for Publication, Amendment to Articles of Organization, and Application for Registration of a Foreign Limited Liability Company, publication of the Articles of Organization, and preparing the Operating Agreement and Buy-Sell Agreement for your new LLC.
- Serving as the statutory agent for legal service of process.
As your business grows, we can also help you adjust to new opportunities and challenges, all while complying with Arizona’s complicated business laws. Depending on your unique needs, this may include business audits, reorganization, and the revision of your operating agreements and bylaws.
Contact Us Today to Speak to a Scottsdale Business Formation Lawyer
Pak Law Offices has built a reputation for its practical, results-driven approach to business formation law. If you are founding a start-up in Scottsdale, we would love to learn more about your business and its goals. Together, we can build an effective business formation plan that help you achieve your objectives.
If you have a legal problem and do not know where to turn, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to help. We have a vast knowledge base and network to assist you in your time of need.
Phone: (480) 444-9999
Statewide: (866) 997-5728
Address: 8930 East Raintree Drive, Suite 100
Scottsdale, Arizona 85260
Phone: (206) 315-9934
Statewide: (866) 997-5728
Address: 1201 Pacific Avenue, Suite 600
Tacoma, WA 98402