Seattle New Business Owners: Tips for Choosing Your Business Entity

Selecting what kind of business you create is very important.  It affects everything from the way you are taxed to the amount of liability you may have.  There are a handful of different entities. Have a look at them all and decide which is best for you with the assistance of a Seattle business attorney.  Don’t forget, you aren’t forever locked into that structure.  As your business evolves, so can its entity.  What is important is that you consult a Seattle business attorney before you make this critical decision for your new business.

How much thought have you put into structuring your new business?  How informed are you about the different options available?  If you haven’t given it deep thought, or are simply “at a loss” to know how to proceed, the good news is that you really shouldn’t have to agonize over the decision.  A qualified Seattle business formation lawyer can advise you on the relevant issues for each type of business entity structure.  Outlined below are the standard business entity types in the United States, and though many other countries have similar types of business entities, it is suggested that you investigate all of your business entity options with an experienced Seattle area attorney.  The summary below presents a brief synopsis of the pros and cons for each type of entity.  It is meant to initially educate you as a new business owner, and not to be used as the sole guideline for making this important decision.

Sole Proprietorship

  • Pro: Easy to create
  • Pro: Freedom from many regulations
  • Pro: Pass Through Entity
  • Con: Unlimited Liability
  • Con: Hiring People can be tricky

Partnership

  • Pro: Easy to create
  • Pro: Freedom from many regulations (although not as many as Sole Proprietorship)
  • Pro: Pass Through Entity
  • Con: Unlimited Liability for all partners
  • Con: Possible politics and issues between members

Corporations

  • Pro: Limited Liability
  • Pro: Well known entity type
  • Con: Difficult to set up
  • Con: Double Taxation (not pass through)
  • Con: Many Regulations to do business
  • Con: Difficult to operate

Limited Liability Partnership

  • Pro: Fairly easy to establish
  • Pro: Limited Liability
  • Pro: Pass through entity
  • Con: Must have at least two partners at all times
  • Con: Transferring interests is difficult

Limited Liability Company

  • Pro: Fairly easy to establish
  • Pro: Limited Liability
  • Pro: Pass through entity
  • Pro: Freedom of operation
  • Pro: One person can own 100% interest
  • Con: Hard to issue stock for an IPO

The last two entity structures in the summary above are the newest types established to encourage more individuals to start businesses and other investment projects.  Be certain to cover all of these entities with a Seattle business attorney to determine which one is best suited to meet your unique business and financial goals.  If you are entering your “first venture” as a business owner, it may be prudent for you to retain a Seattle small business lawyer who is both experienced in handling the legal paperwork, and interested in assisting small business owners.

Keep in mind that these entity …

Why You Should Use a Letterhead

All types of communication from a legal institution, whether a large or small university or any corporate entity could not be regarded as official unless written in a paper with a letterhead.

This letterhead is the heading at the top of a sheet of letter paper. It usually consists of a name and an address, and a logo or corporate design, and sometimes a background.

A letterhead may also refer to a piece of letter paper imprinted with such a heading or a printed stationery. A business letterhead normally comprise a logo, a return address, and a telephone number. Direct marketers have found that the design of the letterhead can impact response to a promotion letter.

For promotion letters, it is good to create one of a kind letterhead for each letter, one that is designed to the style of the letter copy altering the logo, color, or even return address. For instance, a fund-raising campaign letter for a nonprofit organization may use a simple black-and-white letterhead rather than the organization’s usual two-color embossed, gothic-type letterhead that may sound too sophisticated.

Some marketers have rented post office boxes in a location suitable to their product, such as a Washington, D.C., box to use as a letterhead address for a political fund-raising campaign or a Florida P.O. Box to use for a cruise line. At the same time, there are other traders, who consider a color letterhead will create a more positive feedback than a black-and-white letterhead, unmindful of the promotion type, because the color stimulates the reader’s level of interest in the letter.

On the other hand, there are various legal constraints on the items included in a letterhead, for example in England and Wales it may include the names of all directors or none, but not a selection.

Nevertheless, it is important that whether you are a small business or a multinational one, top management should never forget about the letterhead, as others simply overlook the importance of the letterhead. A company’s letterhead is truly an essential piece to their business identity. It sets the stage for everything else that follows. Almost every piece of advertising literature that the company produces will feature its letterhead, which continually reinforces its importance.

So invest some time in creating a solid letterhead. Consider what feeling you want each of your customers to have when they receive something from you, and incorporate that into your letterhead design. Among the things you should consider is the color. A black and white letterhead can be effective, but there really is no reason why you shouldn’t use color. Color printing is not that expensive, and the positive impact it will have on your letterhead is significant. Use colors that emphasize the purpose of your business and that evoke the type of feelings that you want your customers to have.

Another thing to consider is the paper. The smoother the paper, the better your letterhead will look. In fact, for any literature that you print yourself, you …