fbpx
Edit Content

Factors To Consider Before Choosing a Legal Structure For Your Business

Choosing a legal structure

Choosing the right legal structure for your business is a fundamental decision for any entrepreneur. This choice impacts not only the day-to-day operations of your business but also its legal and tax obligations, and its potential for growth and scalability. If you need to talk to an expert about your business registration and tax needs, contact us here or call 08188122223 or 08038874148.

Whether you’re a solo entrepreneur or part of a team, understanding the implications of this decision is crucial for setting your business up for success. After choosing the right legal structure for your business, register the business with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).

In this article, we explore the key factors to consider when choosing the most suitable legal structure for your venture, ensuring alignment with your business goals, and operational needs.

Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don't Have An Idea
Start Your Business in 30 Days Even If You Don’t Have An Idea

See Also: Comprehensive guide on business registration in Nigeria.

Factors To Consider When Choosing a Legal Structure For Your Business

Here are the factors you have to consider before choosing a legal structure for your business. The information here will guide your decision and ensure you choose the right legal structure.

Flexibility

It is nice to ask where the company will be in the nearest future. So, go back to the business plan to ensure the goals and objectives are aligned with the type of legal structure you choose. The structure should give room for changes and growth and should not limit you.

See Also: Benefits of registering your business with CAC.

Complexity

The simplest business type is the sole proprietorship in terms of starting it up and operational complexity. It is cheaper to register and report profit and tax as personal income. It is difficult, however, to secure outside funding.

Partnerships, on the other hand, require that you sign an agreement with partners to define profits and roles. The corporation is more complex because it requires complex reporting requirements both at the federal and state levels. You can get the agreements when you get the Ultimate Legal Guide to Doing Business in Nigeria.

Liability

On the surface, a corporation carries the least amount of personal liability, since the law recognizes it as its own entity. What this means is that customers and creditors do not have access to your personal assets but they can sue the corporation.

Partnerships share the liability between the partners as stated in their partnership agreement. The sole proprietor bears all the risks of the company and his personal asset is not separate from the business.

Succession Planning

Your choice of business structure can impact your ability to plan for the future of your business, including succession planning. This is especially important in family-owned businesses or businesses planning for long-term growth.

Taxes

The tax structure is different for each of the business structures. The corporation pays more tax than the sole proprietor since the sole proprietor does not pay the company income tax. However, the new Finance Act by the Federal Government has changed what it used to be. So, the advice of a tax expert should be sort of, for guidance.

See Also: Types of taxes in Nigeria and how they’re administered.

Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days
Go from idea to starting your business in 30 days

Control

The business structure you choose will impact the level of control you will have in the operation of the business. A sole proprietorship will be the best choice for you if you want to have primary control of the business and its activities.

Control can be negotiated in a partnership business structure in the partnership agreement.

A corporation is designed to have a board of directors who make major decisions. However at inception, a single person can control a corporation, but as it grows, the need to operate the corporation as a board-directed entity increases.

Capital Investment

If you want to talk to investors, venture capitalists, or take out bank loans then the corporation is your best bet since it is easier to secure outside funding. A corporation can also secure additional funding by selling shares.

The sole proprietor does not enjoy all these benefits and can only obtain funding through personal accounts, personal credits, grants, and taking on partners, family, and friends.

Future Funding and Investment:

Beyond the initial considerations of securing outside funding, think about the long-term investment needs of your business. Different legal structures can affect your ability to attract future investors or raise capital.

Licenses, Permits, And Regulations

Some businesses need special licenses, permits, and regulations to operate and therefore, must take on a particular business structure. Please speak to your lawyer for guidance.

Decision-Making Process:

Consider how decisions will be made within the legal structure you choose. In sole proprietorships and partnerships, decisions can be made quickly, but in corporations, the decision-making process can be more complex and time-consuming.

International Operations:

If you plan to operate or expand your business internationally, certain business structures may be more favourable or compliant with international business laws.

Industry-Specific Considerations:

Some industries may have norms or regulatory requirements that make one type of business structure more advantageous or even mandatory.

Choosing the appropriate legal structure is more than just a legal formality; it’s a strategic decision that affects your business’s identity, efficiency, and future prospects.

From the simplicity of a sole proprietorship to the complexities of a corporation, each structure offers distinct advantages and limitations.

By carefully considering factors such as flexibility, complexity, liability, taxes, control, capital investment, and more, you can choose a structure that not only meets your current needs but also supports your long-term business vision. And you don’t have to do it alone. We are here to guide you, register your business and help you comply with taxes. Contact us or call 08188122223 or 08038874148.

Before Choosing a Legal Structure Seek Legal Advice:

Consulting with legal professionals before choosing a legal structure is not just advisable; it’s a strategic move. Legal experts can provide invaluable insights into the nuances of each legal structure, from sole proprietorships to corporations, and how they align with your business goals and industry regulations.

Legal professionals can guide you through the maze of legal requirements, helping you understand your potential liabilities, the extent of your legal obligations, and the protective measures you can take.

For instance, while a sole proprietorship offers simplicity and direct control, it also exposes the owner to unlimited liability. On the other hand, forming a corporation or a limited liability company (LLC) can provide liability protection but comes with more regulatory requirements and complexity.

Moreover, legal advice is crucial for understanding the implications of business names, trademark issues, and intellectual property rights, which can vary significantly by jurisdiction.

A legal expert can help ensure that your business complies with local laws and regulations, avoiding costly legal disputes down the line. Talk to us at ReDahlia – 08188122223 or 08038874148.

Tax Implications of Choosing the Different Legal Structures

The choice of legal structure has profound implications for your business’s tax obligations. Each structure is subject to different tax regulations, which can greatly affect your business’s financial health.

Understanding these tax implications is essential for making an informed decision on the most tax-efficient structure for your business.

Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships:

Typically, these are considered “pass-through” entities, meaning the business income is passed through to the owners’ personal tax returns, potentially simplifying the tax process but also mingling personal and business finances.

Corporations:

These entities are taxed separately from their owners, often leading to double taxation: once on the corporate income and again on dividends paid to shareholders.

However, some corporations, like S corporations in the United States, offer pass-through taxation while still providing liability protection.

LLCs:

These offer flexibility, allowing owners to choose between being taxed as a pass-through entity or as a corporation, depending on what’s more beneficial.

Considering state-specific and international tax laws is also crucial, especially for businesses operating across state lines or internationally.

Different jurisdictions may offer tax incentives, and credits, or have tax treaties that can impact your decision. Consulting with a tax professional can provide strategic insights into structuring your business to minimize tax liabilities legally.

Changing a Legal Structure

As your business grows and evolves, the initial legal structure you chose might no longer serve your best interests. Changing the legal structure can be a strategic move to accommodate growth, new partnerships, or shifts in your business model. This process, however, involves understanding the implications, requirements, and steps involved.

For instance, transitioning from a sole proprietorship to an LLC or corporation can provide increased liability protection and open up new funding opportunities but may also bring more complex compliance requirements.

Similarly, a business might transition from an LLC to a corporation to prepare for going public or to attract certain types of investors.

The process of changing your business structure involves legal and tax considerations, including re-registering your business, obtaining new licenses and permits, and potentially facing different tax implications.

Planning this transition with the help of legal and tax professionals can ensure a smooth transition, minimizing disruptions to your business operations and ensuring compliance with all regulatory requirements.

How We Can Help You Register Your Business And Comply With Taxes Monthly

Send us a message on WhatsApp- 08188122223 or 08038874148 to help you with your business registration and tax compliance.

Our Essential Compliance Service Covers:

  • Initial Registration for VAT/TIN Certificate: Complete facilitation of your initial VAT/TIN registration process with FIRS and LIRS.
  • Initial Registration for PAYE, Business Premises, and Development Levy.
  • Monthly PAYE: Computation of PAYE deductible, remittance of PAYE, and filing of monthly returns.
  • Monthly VAT: Computation of VAT payable, remittance of VAT, and filing of monthly returns, taking cognizance of applicable tax laws.
  • Annual Business Premises and Development Levy Renewal

On-Demand Premium Services

  • Should your business require our ProMAX Compliance Service, which includes account preparation, auditing, and TCC filing, please contact us directly. This premium service is tailored to your specific needs and billed upon request.

Why Choose Our Compliance Services?

Peace of Mind: With our expertise, you can rest assured that your compliance needs are in capable hands.

Cost Efficiency: Save on potential non-compliance penalties with our cost-effective services.

Expert Guidance: Our seasoned professionals keep your business compliant amidst regulatory changes.

Get in touch today by clicking the Contact Us page or sending us a message on WhatsApp: 08038874148 or 08188122223.

How We Can Work with You to Start And Grow Your Business

If you want to work with our founder- Florence Chikezie to start a profitable and sustainable business, then enrol in the Start Your Business in 30 Days Program. She will take you from idea to starting your business in 30 days. At the end of the program, you will get a registered business with CAC, logo and brand assets, admin set-up, one-on-one consulting sessions and more. Click here to enrol.

Every week, she teaches practical business lessons that have helped thousands of entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. If you want to benefit from her teachings, click to sign up for the weekly business lesson here.

She is an internationally trained award-winning entrepreneur running three profitable businesses and a member of the prestigious Forbes Coaches Council. 

She also works with companies and established corporations to scale their impact and revenue. Reach us at Business@entrepreneurs.ng if you would like to transform your business.

See the different ways we can help increase your business success.

Share:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join Entrepreneurs Family

No spam, only business insights and tips. 

Entrepreneurs Sign Up

Business Registration

Most Popular

Join Entrepreneurs Family

No spam, only business insights and tips. 

Entrepreneurs Sign Up

Related Posts

Social Selling

How to Use Social Selling to Drive eCommerce Sales

Mastering the art of social selling is no longer an option; it’s a necessity for eCommerce businesses. Social selling, leveraging social media platforms to connect with potential customers, has emerged as a powerful strategy to drive eCommerce sales and foster meaningful relationships with buyers. The rise of social media has

Business mentor

How Entrepreneurs Can Find a Business Mentor

Who is a Business Mentor? Think of a business mentor as a seasoned guide in the jungle of business. They’ve already walked the paths you’re on and know where the quicksand is and how to avoid it. It’s like they have a map to the treasure in this case business

Cheapest Business Ideas To Start

10 Cheapest Business Ideas To Start In Nigeria

Nigeria’s heartbeat is its entrepreneurial spirit. In a country with endless opportunities, the concept of entrepreneurship is not just a path to personal success; it’s a necessity for national progress. We will be exploring the 10 cheapest business ideas you can start to contribute to the national growth of Nigeria.

Small Business Insurance

Small Business Insurance- Everything You Need To Know

Why does a small business need insurance? Imagine small business insurance as a safety net for your business. It is designed to catch you when unexpected events threaten to tumble your hard work into chaos. This form of insurance comprises various policies designed to provide a financial cushion against the

Scroll to Top

Join Entrepreneurs Family!

Get access to FREE business insights and funding opportunities daily.

Entrepreneurs Sign Up