Whether you are launching a new enterprise or trying to grow an existing business, there are a number of considerations involved, from selecting the appropriate business structure and obtaining licenses, to engaging in business transactions and dealing with issues that arise. Given the competitive environment in which most businesses operate, having skilled small business law attorneys to help you navigate these challenges is invaluable.
The Law Office of Carey Thompson, PC provides advice and counsel to entrepreneurs and small business owners in Azle, Blue Mound, Fort Worth, Haslet, Keller, Lake Worth, Newark, Saginaw, and throughout greater Tarrant County. We are committed to helping our business clients get off the ground, operate their business smoothly and achieve their strategic objectives.
Small Business Law: Business Formation
Starting a new venture requires a great deal of advanced planning centered on structuring and financing the business, choosing the preferred method of tax treatment, and protecting owners from liabilities such as business and legal disputes. When it comes to selecting the appropriate business structure, it is crucial for a business owner to separate his or her personal assets from the entity’s debts and other liabilities such as lawsuits, tax payments and penalties, wage and hour claims, benefit payments, employment disputes and more. In the event that the business fails, the owner’s personal assets must be protected.
At the Law Office of Carey Thompson, we advise our clients on how to protect their personal assets by taking advantage of certain corporate structures under the Internal Revenue Code. In this regard, many small businesses are set up as Subchapter S Corporations that can separate the owner’s personal assets from business liabilities.
A properly structured S-corporation must adhere to certain guidelines under the Code, however. First, the entity must be domestic and not have any alien shareholders. Further, the corporation must have fewer than 100 shareholders, none of which can be corporations or partnerships. Finally, the entity must have only one class of stock, and not be affiliated with another corporate entity.
Small Business Law: Other Business Structures
We often advise our small business clients on a range of other business formation options such as:
- Limited Liability Company (LLC) – These are created to provide liability protection without the restrictions of an S corporation. LLCs are designed to protect owners from being held personally liable for company debts by combining the features of sole proprietorships or partnerships with corporate protections.
- Partnerships – In this arrangement, partners generally have equal power to represent the organization, although limited liability partnerships can be created that limit each partner’s exposure to the liabilities of other partners.
- Joint Ventures – These are different from partnerships in that a joint venture is entered into for a set period of time in order to achieve a specific business objective.
Comprehensive Business Services
Our services also include preparing the necessary foundational documents including Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws and submitting required documents with the Secretary of State. Additionally, we assist with obtaining the necessary business licenses and tax identification numbers, negotiating and preparing partnership agreements, operating agreements, buy sell agreements, and leases as well as reviewing documents that have been prepared by other attorneys.
Business Succession Planning
As any small business owner knows, being successful requires a lifetime of dedication and hard work. Nonetheless, many closely held and family businesses are not adequately prepared for retirement or the sudden death of an owner and do not survive into the next generation. At the Law Office of Carey Thompson, PC we craft business succession plans for small businesses and professional service firms as part of a comprehensive estate planning strategy.
To achieve this objective, we prepare the appropriate estate planning tools such as trusts, powers of attorney, and advance medical directives. Additionally, we negotiate and draw up buy-sell agreements, including cross purchase and entity purchase agreements. We also recommend obtaining adequate life insurance to fund these arrangements. We know that a successful transition strategy requires a proper valuation of the business, and we are readily familiar with the different methods of valuation including the asset, income and market approaches. Depending on the size of the business, we may call upon our respected network of accountants and financial professionals to determine the accurate value of the business.
Dallas-Fort Worth Small Business Law Attorneys
The Law Office of Carey Thompson, PC has a well-earned reputation in the business community for integrity, fairness, and diligence and putting the best interests of our clients first. We work closely with all types of businesses from inception to final dissolution. Our guiding principle is to provide trusted advice so that clients can focus on running a successful enterprise. If you need assistance forming a new business, advice on contracts, tax matters, succession planning, or any related matter, contact our office today for a free consultation.
Carey Thompson is a business attorney that serves clients in Azle, Dallas, Fort Worth, Keller, Saginaw, and throughout greater Tarrant County with any business law needs including business formation and succession planning.