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Limited Liability Company

A business structure in the United States that provides its owners with limited liability protection while allowing profits and losses to pass through to their personal tax returns.

Business Glossary provided by Plannit.ai

Definition:

Limited Liability Company (LLC) is a flexible form of enterprise that blends elements of partnership and corporate structures. An LLC provides its owners, known as members, with limited liability, meaning they are protected from personal responsibility for the company’s debts and liabilities. This structure allows profits and losses to pass through directly to the owners' personal income without being subject to corporate taxes.

Context of Use:

The LLC is a popular choice for business owners in the United States due to its protective and flexible nature. It is used across various industries, particularly beneficial for small to medium-sized businesses.

Purpose:

The primary purpose of an LLC is to limit the personal liability of the members, similar to a corporation, while providing the tax efficiencies and operational flexibility of a partnership.

Example:

  • Real Estate: Many real estate investors form LLCs to manage their properties, protecting personal assets from liabilities associated with their real estate activities.

  • Consulting Firms: Small consulting businesses often operate as LLCs to take advantage of pass-through taxation while protecting personal assets from business risks.

Related Terms:

  • Member: An owner of an LLC.

  • Articles of Organization: The document filed with a state by the founders of an LLC to legally establish the entity.

  • Operating Agreement: A contract among LLC members governing the LLC's business, and member’s financial and managerial rights and duties.

FAQs:

1. What are the benefits of forming an LLC?

A: Key benefits include liability protection for members, pass-through taxation, and less stringent regulatory requirements compared to corporations.

2. How is an LLC taxed?

A: Typically, LLCs are taxed as pass-through entities, meaning that business profits and losses are passed through to members’ personal tax returns, avoiding corporate taxes.

3. How does one form an LLC?

A: Forming an LLC involves choosing a business name, filing Articles of Organization with the state, and creating an Operating Agreement.

4. Can an LLC have unlimited members?

A: Yes, an LLC can have an unlimited number of members, and members can be individuals, corporations, or other LLCs.

5. What is the difference between an LLC and a corporation?

A: LLCs offer more flexibility in management and benefit from pass-through taxation, while corporations are subject to double taxation but can offer shares to the public.

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