Forming a business involves far more than management, marketing and sales. Starting and successfully operating a business will almost always also involve some challenging legal questions. When you launch a new business venture, you need an experienced California business attorney to guide you through the legal issues that will arise during its early formation and operational stages. A trusted lawyer can advise you to ensure you have smart, effective strategies that will allow your business to grow and thrive.
At Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C., we have the knowledge and experience to help business owners and managers anticipate and plan for legal challenges. Our attorneys can provide tailored business and tax solutions for your unique business. We partner with our clients to help them avoid daunting legal and tax problems, and we can work with your business, no matter its age, size or location.
Our business lawyers in Orinda, will guide you through the business formation process so that you can choose the right legal entity to accomplish your business and personal goals. We can also prepare the necessary documents to give your business entity a solid legal foundation for the future.
If you are starting a business in California or you have already begun your business operations, talk to a knowledgeable Orinda business lawyer from Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C. to learn more about your rights, options, and legal obligations. A business lawyer in California can successfully guide you through the launch and operational setup for your business.
Call us today at (925)-271-4451 or contact us online.
Choosing the Right Business Entity
Forming a business often begins with a basic question: What type of business structure is right for your venture? Having the right type of business entity will make it easier for your business to operate, grow and thrive. The entity you choose may make your business more attractive to customers, vendors, investors, lenders and possible strategic partners.
When you start a business in California, you can choose from multiple types of entities including:
- LLC – A limited liability company combines features of partnerships and corporations. An LLC allows for pass-through taxation while permitting the company’s owners to enjoy limited liability protection. LLC’s also have wide flexibility in setting up their equity or ownership structures and management provisions.
- General Partnership – A general partnership is formed by two or more parties who operate and manage a business together and share in its profits. Typically, the partners equally share liabilities and profits.
- Limited Liability Partnership – LLPs operate like general partnerships, except that the partners enjoy the protection of limited liability. A partner’s personal liability for the liabilities of the business is limited solely to the extent of the partner’s investment in the business. Creditors of the LLP cannot reach the personal assets of the partners.
- Sole Proprietorship – A sole proprietorship refers to a person who goes into business without a formal business structure such as an LLC or corporation.
- Family Limited Partnership – FLPs constitute business arrangements in which family members pool their money and resources to run a business venture. FLPs can have general partners, who are responsible for managing and operating the business, and limited partners, who take no part in management and simply receive dividends and distributions for their investment.
- S Corporation – These corporations elect to be taxed under Subchapter S of the Internal Revenue Code. An S corporation operates as a “pass-through” entity, with tax liability for the corporation’s profits and losses passing directly to its owners. A corporation wishing to be taxed under Subchapter S must meet certain requirements regarding its ownership and structure.
- C Corporation – A C corporation pays taxes on its own profits and liabilities. Any dividends paid out to the corporation’s stockholders are taxed again on the stockholder’s own income tax return. For this reason, C corporations are sometimes referred to as “double taxation” entities. However, a C corp structure has other advantages, depending upon your long-term business objectives.
We can help you analyze your goals, including drafting the necessary paperwork and legal filings, to get any kind of business formation off the ground and running. Important business documents for your operation may include articles of incorporation, LLC certificates of formation, partnership agreements, operating agreements, bylaws, founder agreements and shareholders’ agreements, and private placement memoranda.
Our experienced business lawyers in Orinda will take the time to understand you and your business goals. We will help you choose the entity and structure that will best serve you, any co-owners and your company.
Assisting with General Business Operations
At Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C., helping with your business formation needs is only one of the services we provide. We are committed to help you with the legal side of the day-to-day operation of your company as well if you need us.
Our firm can provide legal assistance for a wide variety of business operations needs, including employment matters, property issues and regulatory problems. We can also stand with your company when it faces legal disputes by efficiently and expeditiously pushing for cost-effective solutions to resolve expensive litigation and other legal issues.
Among the business operational issues that our firm can help with include the following:
- Drafting and executing corporate resolutions
- Keeping minutes for board and corporate meetings
- Drafting and enforcing independent contractor agreements
- Drafting and enforcing employment agreements
- Drafting employee handbooks
- Preparing employee counseling statements and advising your business on employee disciplinary matters
- Helping your business establish employment performance review and evaluation procedures
- Drafting and executing deferred compensation agreements
- Drafting and enforcing non-disclosure agreements, non-compete agreements, and non-solicitation agreements
- Reviewing and executing equipment lease agreements
- Reviewing and executing commercial real estate lease agreements
Contact Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C. to learn how we can assist you with your business operations.
Analyzing and Structuring Merger, Acquisition & Buyout Opportunities
At some point on your business’s journey, you may find it necessary to consider a merger with, or acquisition of, another business or you may need to explore questions and legal issues if another business wants to buy your company.
Business mergers, acquisitions and sales can be legally complex and time-consuming. Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C. can provide your company with the legal advice you need to successfully navigate these important crossroads in your business career. We can help ensure that any corporate transaction proceeds as smoothly as possible and that your business interests are fully protected.
Among the M&A legal matters we can help you with include:
- Buy-sell agreements
- Equity purchase letters of intent
- Equity purchase agreements
- Pledge agreements
- Redemption agreements
- Asset purchase agreements
Our firm can also guide you throughout an M&A or buyout process by:
- Helping you seek out and evaluate transaction partners
- Helping you field requests to exercise redemption or buyout clauses
- Helping you negotiate deal terms and term sheets
- Helping you draft and execute appropriate protections such as non-disclosure agreements and exclusivity agreements
- Assisting you during due diligence process (including requesting due diligence from the other party and responding to due diligence requests)
- Advising you through board, shareholder and partner approvals
Critical Tax Planning for Your Business
Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C. will devise the best possible tax strategies for your business. We will work diligently to lower your business’s tax liabilities and help to ensure that your business complies with local, state and federal tax laws by helping you with:
- Electing business taxation status (such as disregarded entity status, partnership, Subchapter S, or Subchapter C)
- Preparing and filing tax returns
- Consulting on payroll taxes and withholdings from employee paychecks
- Helping structure retirement and benefit plans for yourself or your employees
- Crafting and overseeing the operation of employee equity plans
- Paying use and excise taxes
- Collecting sales tax on sales
- Taking advantage of the timing of income and expenses
- Declaring depreciation of assets
- Using qualified business income deductions
The tax laws provide businesses with several tools to reduce tax liabilities. However, the tax codes are complex, and they can also pose traps for the unwary and uninformed. Failing to collect and remit a required tax or taking the wrong deduction can lead to legal problems and expenses for you and your business.
Let us advise you on your business decisions and help you develop strategies that minimize your tax burdens. We can provide counsel to ensure that you collect and pay the taxes your business owes under the law.
Talk to Our Business Attorney Now
If you are considering starting a business, you need an experienced business attorney in your corner. We can guide you through the formation process and taxation issues to ensure that you have a business entity and structure that will put your new venture on the path to success.
Schedule a free initial consultation with an Orinda business attorney from Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C. today to learn how our firm can help you with your business formation and operational needs.