top of page
Grow Your Own Biz

Grow Your Own Biz - Legal Structure

Resource Links & Information

There are several forms of business structures for you to consider. Selecting the business entity which is right for you will involve tax, business and estate planning, and financial considerations. In this section, we discuss the various structures and identify the advantages and disadvantages of each. The legal structure you choose will determine the organization, debt liability, and tax requirements as well as other aspects of business questions.

  • Sole Proprietorship

  • Partnerships

  • Corporations

  • Limited Liability Company

Form more information about incorporating, a booklet is available by contacting:
Office of the Secretary of State | Corporate Division | 302 Legislative Office Building |
300 Salisbury Street | Raleigh, NC 27603-590 or call 919.733.4201.


Legal Issues


  1. Insurance Benefits Plan – Most employees today expect some kinds of benefit package. There are always costs associated with these plans. We recommend you seek professional advice to help you evaluate the options available to you.

  2. Regulations – Limited space in this booklet prevents us from identifying and describing all the workplace and environmental regulations that could potentially affect your business. A few common agencies you may encounter are: OSHA – The Occupation Safety and Health Act. This agency sets guidelines for worker safety. Failure to comply with OSHA regulations can result in severe financial penalties. Compliance with these regulations is not optional.

  3. Americans with Disabilities Act – As an employer, you cannot discriminate against the disabled. This applies to your workforce as well as your facilities if you are open to the public. You are encouraged to get copies of the regulations and determine which sections apply to your business.

  4. Harassment – The government and the courts are taking a strong position in trying to discourage harassment in the workplace. Harassment, including sexual harassment, can take many forms. An employee policy which specifically addresses theses issues and provides for enforcement can help you avoid problems in this area.

  5. Consumer Protection – Federal and state governments have passed laws to protect the consumer. These regulations affect everything from consumer credit to warranties. The NC Attorney General’s Office can provide information and assistance regarding these regulations.

  6. Environmental Laws – In the past 30 years, several environmental acts have been passed which impact virtually every business and real estate transaction. The NC Department of Environmental and Natural Resources has established an ombudsman office to assist small business with environmental issues.


Other Issues


  1. Employee Responsibilities – No matter what form of business you decide to enter, if you plan to have employees you will face certain employee responsibilities; including payroll taxes, unemployment taxes, employee insurance and benefits, and providing a safe workplace.

  2. Payroll Taxes and Employment Taxes – The Internal Revenue Service provides excellent publications by request of from their Web site These publications specifically address critical tax and payroll issues that new business owners must understand and comply.

  3. Business Insurance – All businesses will need a basic business liability insurance policy covering accidents, fire and theft. Optional liability insurance can be obtained for flood, vandalism, employee theft, loss of income, loss of key persons, product problems, errors and omissions and protection for the board of directors. Customer protection and performance bonds are also available, if desired or required. Contact local insurance agent for pricing and options.

Disclaimer: The information presented here is intended as a public service. Although efforts have been made to assure that the information is accurate and up-to-date, the user assumes all responsibility for the use of information provided. The sponsors of this web site expressly disclaim any liability for the information provided herein.

bottom of page