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Why Creating An LLC As A Single Member LLC Is Better Than A Sole Proprietorship

Jun 28, 2008
When creating an LLC as a single member LLC, the business owners gains 4 significant advantages over a sole proprietor business structure. With the costs of starting and maintaining a limited liability company being so minimal, most lawyers and CPAs would advise on the use of the single member LLC. . . it is a protection vehicle and does not create any added complexity when it comes to operations and taxes.


A limited liability company provides a legally enforceable shield protecting you personally from the obligations and liabilities of your business. If anyone ever wanted to file a lawsuit against your business, then you would not be personally liable just because you are the owner. If you run your business as a sole proprietorship, you are inextricably part of the business and so you become the target of anyone who has a claim or wants to make trouble for your business. You cannot avoid this personal liability in a sole proprietorship. You need a single member LLC.

Do not think that given the nature of your business, a lawsuit is unlikely. Business lawsuits are now an epidemic in America. The more your business interacts with others, the more likely there could be a claim.

So, any third party, whether it be a customer, a service provider, contractor, employee or anyone who just visits your business is a potential threat..
Now, you can start to think through the chances of who can sue you but instead, try to understand what lawsuits are all about. They are about money. If your business becomes successful, your chances of lawsuits are higher because you will be getting and keeping more assets.

Instead of justifying or hoping you never get sued as a sole proprietor, it is better to ask whether paying the few hundred dollars to create and maintain an LLC each year is worth having this protection. Check with your specific state to see what specific fees apply when it comes creating an LLC and maintaining it on file each year.


From an operational perspective, a single member LLC can operate his or her business in almost the same way as a sole proprietorship with a few exceptions.
When creating an LLC, the entity should have a simple operating agreement in place but otherwise, there are no legally required formalities like meetings and written approvals as there are with corporations. Maintenance is minimal.

When conducting business, it is very important to make clear to all parties that it is the LLC that is the business. This usually means including your LLC business name in all your written material (marketing material, advertisements, contracts).

For a single member LLC, there is no difference in how the business reports and pays federal income taxes . A single member LLC is disregarded by the IRS for tax purposes only and so you pay taxes using the exact method of rules for sole proprietorships. By operating a single member LLC, you get all the advantages of the limited liability company as a business vehicle without any added difficulties when it comes to income taxes.


Customers today are skeptical when it comes to choosing who to do business with. One method in which they distinguish a legitimate businesses from others is when they see that a business is being run through a formal legal entity such as an LLC.

Let us face it. Most of the business scams and fly by night businesses out there are sole proprietors. Their goals are to take money from unsuspecting victims. Many will not go through the process of setting up a formal legal entity for their scheming plans. It is so simple to put forth a business name to the public and allege that you are running a business. This is all that is required for a proprietor to start.

Many customers recognize a business that has taken the steps involved with creating an LLC likely has intelligent and serious owners behind it. A single member LLC business generally portrays more trust and professionalism over a sole proprietor running the same business.

Of course, there are many legitimate and respectable sole proprietor businesses out there but for the potential customer it is difficult to ascertain which ones are for real and are trustworthy. It helps a lot when customers see an LLC designation after a business name. Creating an LLC can makes it easier to launch your business and get those customers.
About the Author
For more FAQ information about the LLC v. Sole Proprietorship, visit the LLC Expert Learning Center at http://www.TheLLCExpert.com
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