Types of Business Ownership

Giovanni Matteo Angeli

October 9, 2022

International College

When starting a new business, choosing your business’s legal structure is vital. Not only will this affect how you run your business, but it will also protect your assets. There are several different types of business ownership, so it is essential to know their differences. For example, a solo entrepreneur may set up their business as a sole proprietorship. Under this setup, you are the only owner of the company and, therefore, are responsible for all of its debts and obligations.

Sole proprietorship

A sole proprietorship is a form of business ownership where the owner is the sole and only shareholder. This type of ownership has several advantages, including an easy operational structure and a flexible management style. A sole proprietor usually makes business decisions alone without any outside input. However, the owner should ensure that their business operates legally and makes enough money to pay off debts.

A sole proprietorship is the simplest type of business ownership and is often the best choice for a first business. It is inexpensive to start and requires little government regulation. However, a sole proprietor is personally liable for the business’s debts and taxes, making it challenging to obtain the capital needed to expand. Nevertheless, a sole proprietorship can be a good option for those with a low-risk business idea or those who want to test a business idea before committing to a more complex business structure.

A sole proprietor doesn’t need to obtain a separate employee EIN. However, they must get a federal employer identification number (EIN) if they wish to hire other individuals. This number is free and can be obtained online. In addition, it’s essential to keep business and personal expenses separate. One way to ensure the safety of your business funds is to open a business bank account. It’s also essential to set up a business credit card so that customers can pay with their credit cards or write checks to the business.


Corporations are one of the most complicated forms of business ownership. They are governed by law and give owners limited liability for the company’s actions. Furthermore, shareholders’ income is reported on their tax returns, avoiding double taxation. On the other hand, partnerships involve two or more people who share ownership but maintain personal liability for the business’s debts. The partners also hold decision-making authority.

Shareholders own corporations and invest in the business by buying shares of stock. The number of shares each shareholder owns determines how much of the corporation they own. For instance, a person holding 30 shares owns 30 percent of the company. In addition, shareholders elect a board of directors, which oversees the company’s significant policies and decisions. They also hold management accountable for reaching the company’s goals. Usually, the board of directors hires the company’s top executive or chief executive officer.

Corporations are separate legal entities that have many advantages over a sole proprietorship. For example, they can hire employees, own assets, borrow money, and pay taxes. Additionally, they can engage in litigation without the personal liability of their owners. In addition, corporations are often preferred by entrepreneurs who seek a more formal structure. Additionally, corporations may eventually seek global expansion or an initial public offering.


An LLC is a business ownership structure to separate personal financial matters from the company’s. This separation is essential to courts. One way to maintain the break is to establish a business credit card. Most banks require you to list your company details when opening a new account.

Another benefit of an LLC is that it offers more flexibility in taxation. In general, LLCs are taxed like a partnership or sole proprietorship. This means that you and the other members of the LLC report the business income on your tax returns and pay personal income tax on the profits. In addition, if you work in the business, you’ll have to pay self-employment taxes.

An LLC is also easy to manage. Since it’s not a corporation, it doesn’t need an executive director or board of directors. Instead, it can be controlled by a group of members or by a single member responsible for running the business.