Import / Export Kit For Dummies, 3rd Edition
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A limited liability company (LLC) brings together two benefits that can be valuable to many business owners and that you can take advantage of when forming your import/export business:

  • Limited liability: The members of an LLC enjoy the same limits on their personal liability as a corporate shareholder does. They aren't personally liable for the company's debts.

  • Pass-through taxation: The business entity itself pays no federal income tax. Instead, just as in a partnership or sole proprietorship, each member of an LLC simply pays tax on his share of the profits or uses his share of losses to offset other income.

An LLC is very similar to an S corporation. The significant advantage of the LLC is flexibility. An LLC permits its members to divide income (or losses) as they see fit, and the allocations don't have to be based on percentages of ownership as they are with an S corporation.

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John Capela has taught marketing, management, and international business courses at St. Joseph's College in New York for 20 years. He is president of CADE International, which provides consulting and training in international business including importing, exporting, licensing, and foreign investment.

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