Friday, June 24, 2022

Variations

A Professional Limited Liability Company (usually shortened as PLLC, P.L.L.C., or P.L., sometimes PLC, standing for professional limited company - not to be confused with public limited company) is a limited liability company organized for the purpose of providing professional services. Usually, professions where the state requires a license to provide services, such as a doctor, chiropractor, lawyer, accountant, architect, landscape architect, or engineer, require the formation of a PLLC. However, some states, such as California, do not permit LLCs to engage in the practice of a licensed profession. Exact requirements of PLLCs vary from state to state. Typically, a PLLC's members must all be professionals practicing the same profession. In addition, the limitation of personal liability of members does not extend to professional malpractice claims.

A Series LLC is a special form of a Limited liability company that allows a single LLC to segregate its assets into separate series. For example, a series LLC that purchases separate pieces of real estate may put each in a separate series so if the lender forecloses on one piece of property, the others are not affected.

An L3C is a for-profit, social enterprise venture that has a stated goal of performing a socially beneficial purpose, not maximizing income. It is a hybrid structure that combines the legal and tax flexibility of a traditional LLC, the social benefits of a nonprofit organization, and the branding and market positioning advantages of a social enterprise.

An anonymous Limited Liability Company is a LLC for which ownership information is not made publicly available by the state. Anonymity is possible in states that do not require the public disclosure of legal ownership of a LLC, or where a LLC's identified legal owners are another anonymous company.

Read more, here.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Advantages and Disadvantages of a LLC

Advantages
  • Choice of tax regime. An LLC can elect to be taxed as a sole proprietor, partnership, S corporation or C corporation (as long as they would otherwise qualify for such tax treatment), providing for a great deal of flexibility.
  • A limited liability company with multiple members that elects to be taxed as partnership may specially allocate the members' distributive share of income, gain, loss, deduction, or credit via the company operating agreement on a basis other than the ownership percentage of each member.[a] S corporations may not specially allocate profits, losses and other tax items under US tax law.
  • The owners of the LLC, called members, are protected from some or all liability for acts and debts of the LLC, depending on state shield laws.
  • In the United States, an S corporation is limited to 100 shareholders, and all of them must be U.S. tax residents. An LLC may have an unlimited number of members, and there is no citizenship restriction.
  • Much less administrative paperwork and record-keeping than a corporation.
  • Pass-through taxation (i.e., no double taxation), unless the LLC elects to be taxed as a C corporation.
  • Using default tax classification, profits are taxed personally at the member level, not at the LLC level.
  • LLCs in most states are treated as entities separate from their members. However, in some jurisdictions such as Connecticut, case law has determined that owners were not required to plead facts sufficient to pierce the corporate veil and LLC members can be personally liable for operation of the LLC) (see, for example, the case of Sturm v. Harb Development
  • LLCs in some states can be set up with just one natural person involved.
  • Less risk of being "stolen" by fire-sale acquisitions (more protection against "hungry" investors).
  • For some business ventures, such as real estate investment, each property can be owned by a separate LLC, thereby shielding the owners and their other properties from cross-liability.
  • Flexible membership: Members of an LLC may include individuals, partnerships, trusts, estates, organizations, or other business entities, and most states do not limit the type or number of members.
Disadvantages
Although there is no statutory requirement for an operating agreement in most jurisdictions, members of a multiple member LLC who operate without one may encounter problems. Unlike state laws regarding stock corporations, which are very well developed and provide for a variety of governance and protective provisions for the corporation and its shareholders, most states do not dictate detailed governance and protective provisions for the members of a limited liability company. In the absence of such statutory provisions, members of an LLC must establish governance and protective provisions pursuant to an operating agreement or similar governing document.

  • It may be more difficult to raise financial capital for an LLC as investors may be more comfortable investing funds in the better-understood corporate form with a view toward an eventual IPO. One possible solution may be to form a new corporation and merge into it, dissolving the LLC and converting into a corporation.
  • Many jurisdictions—including Alabama, California, Kentucky, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Texas—levy a franchise tax or capital values tax on LLCs. In essence, this franchise or business privilege tax is the fee the LLC pays the state for the benefit of limited liability. The franchise tax can be an amount based on revenue, an amount based on profits, or an amount based on the number of owners or the amount of capital employed in the state, or some combination of those factors, or simply a flat fee, as in Delaware.
  • Effective in Texas for 2007 the franchise tax is replaced with the Texas Business Margin Tax. This is paid as: tax payable = revenues minus some expenses with an apportionment factor. In most states, however, the fee is nominal and only a handful charge a tax comparable to the tax imposed on corporations.
  • In California, both foreign and domestic LLCs, corporations, and trusts, whether for-profit or non-profit—unless the entity is tax exempt—must at least pay a minimum income tax of $800 per year to the Franchise Tax Board; and no foreign LLC, corporation or trust may conduct business in California unless it is duly registered with the California Secretary of State.
  • Renewal fees may also be higher. Maryland, for example, charges a stock or nonstock corporation $120 for the initial charter, and $100 for an LLC. The fee for filing the annual report the following year is $300 for stock-corporations and LLCs. The fee is zero for non-stock corporations. In addition, certain states, such as New York, impose a publication requirement upon formation of the LLC which requires that the members of the LLC publish a notice in newspapers in the geographic region that the LLC will be located that it is being formed. For LLCs located in major metropolitan areas (e.g., New York City), the cost of publication can be significant.
  • The management structure of an LLC may not be clearly stated. Unlike corporations, they are not required to have a board of directors or officers. (This could also be seen as an advantage to some.)
  • Taxing jurisdictions outside the US are likely to treat a US LLC as a corporation, regardless of its treatment for US tax purposes—for example a US LLC doing business outside the US or as a resident of a foreign jurisdiction. This is very likely where the country (such as Canada) does not recognize LLCs as an authorized form of business entity in that country.
  • The principals of LLCs use many different titles—e.g., member, manager, managing member, managing director, chief executive officer, president, and partner. As such, it can be difficult to determine who actually has the authority to enter into a contract on the LLC's behalf.

Read more, here.

1371-C Oliver Road
Fairfield, California 94534

By Phone: 707.428.9871
By Fax: 707.428.9873

By Email: btpfairfield@sbcglobal.net


Saturday, June 18, 2022

How understanding divorce can help your marriage | Jeannie Suk Gersen


To understand what makes marriages work, we need to talk about why they sometimes end, says family law professor Jeannie Suk Gersen. Follow along as she lays out three ways that thinking about marital decisions through the lens of divorce can help you better navigate togetherness from the beginning.

1371-C Oliver Road
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Wednesday, June 15, 2022

History of an LLC


The first state to enact a law authorizing the creation of limited liability companies was Wyoming in 1977. The law was a project of the Hamilton Brothers Oil Company, which sought to organize its business in the United States with liability and tax advantages similar to those it had obtained in Panama.

From 1960 to 1997, the classification of unincorporated business associations for the purpose of U.S. federal income tax law was governed by the "Kintner regulations," which were named after the prevailing taxpayer in the 1954 legal precedent of that name. As promulgated by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in 1960, the Kintner regulations set forth a complex six-factor test for determining whether such business associations would be taxed as corporations or partnerships. Some of these factors had equal significance, so that the presence of only half of them would result in classification as a partnership. Accordingly, the Wyoming Legislature tailored its statute to grant LLCs particular corporate features without exceeding this threshold.

For several years, other states were slow to adopt the LLC form because it was unclear how the IRS and courts would apply the Kintner regulations to it. After the IRS finally decided in 1988 in Revenue Ruling 88-76 that Wyoming LLCs were taxable as partnerships, other states began to take the LLC seriously and enacted their own LLC statutes. By 1996, all 50 states had LLC statutes. In 1995, the IRS came to the conclusion that the widespread enactment of LLC statutes had undermined the Kintner regulations, and in 1996 it promulgated new regulations establishing a so-called "check the box" (CTB) entity classification election system that went into effect throughout the United States on January 1, 1997.

Read more, here.

1371-C Oliver Road
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By Phone: 707.428.9871
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Sunday, June 12, 2022

What is an LLC?

A limited liability company (LLC) is the US-specific form of a private limited company. It is a business structure that can combine the pass-through taxation of a partnership or sole proprietorship with the limited liability of a corporation. An LLC is not a corporation under state law; it is a legal form of a company that provides limited liability to its owners in many jurisdictions. LLCs are well known for the flexibility that they provide to business owners; depending on the situation, an LLC may elect to use corporate tax rules instead of being treated as a partnership, and, under certain circumstances, LLCs may be organized as not-for-profit. In certain U.S. states (for example, Texas), businesses that provide professional services requiring a state professional license, such as legal or medical services, may not be allowed to form an LLC but may be required to form a similar entity called a professional limited liability company (PLLC).

An LLC is a hybrid legal entity having certain characteristics of both a corporation and a partnership or sole proprietorship (depending on how many owners there are). An LLC is a type of unincorporated association distinct from a corporation. The primary characteristic an LLC shares with a corporation is limited liability, and the primary characteristic it shares with a partnership is the availability of pass-through income taxation. As a business entity, an LLC is often more flexible than a corporation and may be well-suited for companies with a single owner.

Although LLCs and corporations both possess some analogous features, the basic terminology commonly associated with each type of legal entity, at least within the United States, is sometimes different. When an LLC is formed, it is said to be "organized", not "incorporated" or "chartered", and its founding document is likewise known as its "articles of organization," instead of its "articles of incorporation" or its "corporate charter". Internal operations of an LLC are further governed by its "operating agreement," a "member," rather than a "shareholder.” Additionally, ownership in an LLC is represented by a "membership interest" or an "LLC interest" (sometimes measured in "membership units" or just "units" and at other times simply stated only as percentages), rather than represented by "shares of stock" or just "shares" (with ownership measured by the number of shares held by each shareholder). Similarly, when issued in physical rather than electronic form, a document evidencing ownership rights in an LLC is called a "membership certificate" rather than a "stock certificate".

In the absence of express statutory guidance, most American courts have held that LLC members are subject to the same common law alter ego piercing theories as corporate shareholders. However, it is more difficult to pierce the LLC veil because LLCs do not have many formalities to maintain. As long as the LLC and the members do not commingle funds, it is difficult to pierce the LLC veil. Membership interests in LLCs and partnership interests are also afforded a significant level of protection through the charging order mechanism. The charging order limits the creditor of a debtor-partner or a debtor-member to the debtor's share of distributions, without conferring on the creditor any voting or management rights.

Limited liability company members may, in certain circumstances, also incur a personal liability in cases where distributions to members render the LLC insolvent.

Read more, here.

1371-C Oliver Road
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By Phone: 707.428.9871
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Thursday, June 9, 2022

A brief history of divorce - Rod Phillips


Dig into the complicated history of divorce— from the earliest known divorce laws in ancient Mesopotamia to modern day. 

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Formally or informally, human societies across place and time have made rules to bind and dissolve couples. The stakes of who can obtain a divorce, and why, have always been high. Divorce is a battlefield for some of society’s most urgent issues, including the roles of church and state, individual rights, and women’s rights. Rod Phillips digs into the complicated history of divorce.

Lesson by Rod Phillips, directed by Chintis Lundgren

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Monday, June 6, 2022

History of a Corporation

The word "corporation" derives from corpus, the Latin word for body, or a "body of people". By the time of Justinian (reigned 527–565), Roman law recognized a range of corporate entities under the names Universitas, corpus or collegium. Following the passage of the Lex Julia during the reign of Julius Caesar as Consul and Dictator of the Roman Republic (49–44 BC), and their reaffirmation during the reign of Caesar Augustus as Princeps senatus and Imperator of the Roman Army (27 BC–14 AD), collegia required the approval of the Roman Senate or the Emperor in order to be authorized as legal bodies. These included the state itself (the Populus Romanus), municipalities, and such private associations as sponsors of a religious cult, burial clubs, political groups, and guilds of craftsmen or traders. Such bodies commonly had the right to own property and make contracts, to receive gifts and legacies, to sue and be sued, and, in general, to perform legal acts through representatives. Private associations were granted designated privileges and liberties by the emperor.

The concept of the corporation was revived in the Middle Ages with the recovery and annotation of Justinian's Corpus Juris Civilis by the glossators and their successors the commentators in the 11th–13th centuries. Particularly important in this respect were the Italian jurists Bartolus de Saxoferrato and Baldus de Ubaldis, the latter of whom connected the corporation to the metaphor of the body politic to describe the state.

Entities which carried on business and were the subjects of legal rights were found in ancient Rome, and the Maurya Empire in ancient India. In medieval Europe, churches became incorporated, as did local governments, such as the City of London Corporation. The point was that the incorporation would survive longer than the lives of any particular member, existing in perpetuity. The alleged oldest commercial corporation in the world, the Stora Kopparberg mining community in Falun, Sweden, obtained a charter from King Magnus Eriksson in 1347.

In medieval times, traders would do business through common law constructs, such as partnerships. Whenever people acted together with a view to profit, the law deemed that a partnership arose. Early guilds and livery companies were also often involved in the regulation of competition between traders.

Read more, here.

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By Phone: 707.428.9871
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Friday, June 3, 2022

Corporation, What Is It?

A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the state to act as a single entity (a legal entity recognized by private and public law "born out of statute"; a legal person in legal context) and recognized as such in law for certain purposes. 10  Early incorporated entities were established by charter (i.e. by an ad hoc act granted by a monarch or passed by a parliament or legislature). Most jurisdictions now allow the creation of new corporations through registration. Corporations come in many different types but are usually divided by the law of the jurisdiction where they are chartered based on two aspects: by whether they can issue stock, or by whether they are formed to make a profit. Depending on the number of owners, a corporation can be classified as aggregate (the subject of this article) or sole (a legal entity consisting of a single incorporated office occupied by a single natural person).

One of the most attractive early advantages business corporations offered to their investors, compared to earlier business entities like sole proprietorships and joint partnerships, was limited liability.[clarification needed] Limited liability means that a passive shareholder in a corporation will not be personally liable either for contractually agreed obligations of the corporation, or for torts (involuntary harms) committed by the corporation against a third party. Limited liability in contract is uncontroversial because the parties to the contract could have agreed to it and could agree to waive it by contract. However, limited liability in tort remains controversial because third parties do not agree to waive the right to pursue shareholders. There is significant evidence that limited liability in tort may lead to excessive corporate risk taking and more harm by corporations to third parties.

Where local law distinguishes corporations by their ability to issue stock, corporations allowed to do so are referred to as stock corporations; one type of investment in the corporation is through stock, and owners of stock are referred to as stockholders or shareholders. Corporations not allowed to issue stock are referred to as non-stock corporations; i.e. those who are considered the owners of a non-stock corporation are persons (or other entities) who have obtained membership in the corporation and are referred to as a member of the corporation. Corporations chartered in regions where they are distinguished by whether they are allowed to be for-profit are referred to as for-profit and not-for-profit corporations, respectively.

There is some overlap between stock/non-stock and for-profit/not-for-profit in that not-for-profit corporations are always non-stock as well. A for-profit corporation is almost always a stock corporation, but some for-profit corporations may choose to be non-stock. To simplify the explanation, whenever "stockholder" or "shareholder" is used in the rest of this article to refer to a stock corporation, it is presumed to mean the same as "member" for a non-profit corporation or for a profit, non-stock corporation. Registered corporations have legal personality recognized by local authorities and their shares are owned by shareholders whose liability is generally limited to their investment.

Shareholders do not typically actively manage a corporation; shareholders instead elect or appoint a board of directors to control the corporation in a fiduciary capacity. In most circumstances, a shareholder may also serve as a director or officer of a corporation. Countries with co-determination employ the practice of workers of an enterprise having the right to vote for representatives on the board of directors in a company.

In American English, the word corporation is most often used to describe large business corporations. In British English and in the Commonwealth countries, the term company is more widely used to describe the same sort of entity while the word corporation encompasses all incorporated entities. In American English, the word company can include entities such as partnerships that would not be referred to as companies in British English as they are not a separate legal entity. Late in the 19th century, a new form of the company having the limited liability protections of a corporation, and the more favorable tax treatment of either a sole proprietorship or partnership was developed. While not a corporation, this new type of entity became very attractive as an alternative for corporations not needing to issue stock. In Germany, the organization was referred to as Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung or GmbH. In the last quarter of the 20th century, this new form of non-corporate organization became available in the United States and other countries, and was known as the limited liability company or LLC. Since the GmbH and LLC forms of organization are technically not corporations (even though they have many of the same features), they will not be discussed in this article.

Read more, here.

1371-C Oliver Road
Fairfield, California 94534

By Phone: 707.428.9871
By Fax: 707.428.9873

By Email: btpfairfield@sbcglobal.net