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Business Formation Lawyers Near You

Andrew Gordon avatar
 
Andrew B. Gordon is the founder and managing attorney of Gordon Law Group, an aggressive tax & business law firm in Chicago. Andrew works diligently to ensure t...
Michael J. Duffy avatar
Michael J. Duffy is an attorney in Montgomery McCracken’s Business Department. He focuses his practice on general corporate matters, with a concentration on gov...
G. Robinson Stratton, III avatar
(From an affiliate): "Rob provides legal counsel utilizing a unique skill set. In addition to maintaining a litigation practice since 1991, he has also served i...
Brook M. Thibault avatar
Brook M. Thibault is a Virginia Beach trial lawyer, former Associate Counsel for CMA CGM (America) LLC the world's third largest container ship company, and Pub...
Joel Francis Murray avatar
Joel has a broad range of experience that includes administrative law, appeals and rulemaking, business and corporate law, consumer protection, government affai...
Harris S. Ammerman avatar
I am an experienced Bankruptcy and Debt Relief attorney dedicated to helping my clients in all types of Bankruptcy services such as Chapter 7, Chapter 13, debt ...
Jonathan M. Herbst avatar
Jonathan M. Herbst is a graduate of the University of Delaware (B.A., 1999) and the University of Maryland School of Law (J.D., 2003). Prior to joining The Herb...
Ann L. Fisher avatar
AF Legal & Consulting Services is a business and commercial law firm with an office located in Beaverton, Oregon. AV Preeminent-rated* attorney Ann L. Fisher wo...
Aaron R. Gott avatar
Aaron R. Gott focuses on challenges to government conduct, business and competition litigation, and appeals.
Benjamin L. Luftman avatar
I am believer that people accused of a criminal offense deserve the most competent and experienced legal counsel possible for a fair and reasonable cost of repr...

Having a legal business entity reduces the company’s risk of liability exposure. A business formation lawyer will ask you various questions to determine what kind of business you should form. In addition to these topics, they’ll ask about corporate governance issues, such as minutes, meetings, and how to operate your business. Your business may lose its liability protection if you do not form it appropriately or incorporate it.

What Is a Business Formation Lawyer?

Liability exposure and other vital aspects of business entity selection under state laws that lawyers advise clients on include:

  • Sole proprietorships;
  • Corporations;
  • Partnerships (general partnership or limited partnership);
  • Limited liability partnerships (LLPs);
  • Limited liability companies (LLCs);
  • C-corporations; and
  • S-corporations.

What Does a Business Formation Attorney Do?

Business incorporation benefits your company by providing:

  • Limited liability;
  • Tax advantages;
  • Unlimited duration;
  • Transferability of ownership;
  • Raising capital.

Incorporating a business usually requires the following assistance from the best business formation lawyer near you:

  1. Choosing a C-corporation or an S-corporation for the company;
  2. Choosing a corporate name that distinguishes it from others registered in the state;
  3. Articles of incorporation and appointment of a registered agent;
  4. Drafting corporate bylaws that lay out the company’s rules;
  5. Electing directors and officers;
  6. Issuing stock;
  7. Developing operating agreements; and
  8. Creating a partnership agreement (if necessary).

Small businesses that incorporate are usually closely held corporations, exempt from most regulations. However, you should still get a lawyer’s opinion. If the corporation issues stock, a lawyer can make sure the corporation complies with the securities laws and regulations.

When to Hire a Business Formation Lawyer?

When you decide and form your own business entity, there are multiple steps you can take to get started. It may become necessary for you to consult a lawyer once your business has reached a later stage, such as when you decide to hire employees. It is important to keep in mind, however, that if you are uncertain about anything during the process, hiring a lawyer could help you avoid costly mistakes.

How Do I Choose a Business Formation Attorney?

Businesses should contact lawyers and learn about their basic services and rates in the initial consultation to determine whether they are a good fit for them. By understanding the law firm’s rates, you can budget accordingly and ensure that when you need their services, you can afford them. 

  • Decide what type of lawyer you need;
  • Make sure you choose the right size firm; and
  • Assess whether proximity to your business is important to you.

Prior to hiring a lawyer, do some preliminary research and determine when you wish to hire and who is the best fit for your business. 

Because every business law situation is different, it’s hard to provide a quick answer. It is a great idea to speak to a business lawyer about your concerns.

What Is the Business Formation Lawyer Average Cost?

The best business formation attorneys near you usually charge an hourly fee for their services. This fee is generally determined by several factors. Among them are:

  • Legal experience;
  • The complexity of each case;
  • Rates in your community; and
  • The firm’s size.

Law firms providing legal services to small businesses charge different fees. Smaller firms tend to charge less per hour than larger ones. For example, an attorney may charge a higher hourly rate for court work versus a lower rate for research. An hourly rate of $150 to $325 is typical.

Do Business Formation Attorneys Usually Charge for Consultations?

When you meet with the lawyer, you will be charged an initial consultation fee. This first meeting is not meant for legal advice. A lawyer’s initial consultation is usually charged at an hourly rate, at a reduced rate, or for free. This is a great step for getting your questions answered prior to beginning an attorney-client relationship.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of entity should I form for my new business?

Companies are formed as one of the following:

  • A sole proprietorship;
  • Partnership;
  • Corporation; and
  • LLC (limited liability company).

When deciding what type of business structure to use for your company, you need to consider factors such as how much liability protection against debts you need, your personal tax situation, and how formal or informal you want the business to be.

Sole proprietorships and general partnerships provide the least liability protection, but they can be as formal or informal as the parties like.

LLCs and corporations offer greater protection against the company’s debts, but they are more complex to form and operate.

Your attorney can explain how to form the different types of entities, how they must operate legally, and what their ongoing legal requirements are.

Your lawyer can also suggest which entity is best based on the above factors and your future plans for owning or selling the business, bringing in investors, and other factors.

To determine the tax structure for the different types of entities, you should consult a Certified Public Accountant.

Generally speaking, when should I use an LLC?

LLCs are ideal for business or investment ventures involving two or more people. Compared to a general partnership as well as a limited partnership, LLCs offer numerous advantages. In comparison to an S-corporation, it does not have its own restrictions on how to allocate dividends to members.

Do I need a lawyer near me to incorporate?

Businesses can be expensive to start, and owners under financial stress are often tempted to incorporate without an attorney. It is possible to incorporate a small business without hiring a lawyer if you have the time and skills to perform the research, prepare the paperwork needed to register with the state and draft the legal documents.

This route, however, is not without risk. If you are unsure how to structure your existing business or are worried about drafting the documents correctly, then you should seek professional guidance. A knowledgeable attorney can help you in those circumstances. An attorney can assist you in determining whether your business needs to incorporate, finding the most appropriate corporate structure, and preparing and filing the necessary documents. Working with a lawyer for business formation near you ensures your family business’ incorporation documents adequately shield you from liability for its debts.