By Wisconsin law, a business that has incorporated is recognized thereafter as its own legal entity. As a separate entity from the owners, the business is then considered to be operating on its own when it buys and sells property, assents to contracts and exercises legal rights. To incorporate in Wisconsin, a business must file with the Secretary of State in compliance with particular guidelines.
Benefits of Incorporation in Wisconsin
A corporation enjoys benefits that unincorporated companies do not. Primarily, it cannot be held accountable for an amount of debt greater than the value of the assets that the owners have invested in it. Had the business remained unincorporated, owners risk losing their personal property should the business become unable to satisfy its liabilities. Furthermore, banks in the Dane County area prefer to evaluate the credit worthiness of a business as a whole rather than that of individual owners. This makes the process of obtaining corporate loans simpler. Lastly, a corporation's ownership stake is divided into equal slices or "shares" of stock, which make investments in the business much easier to transfer.
Costs of Incorporation
These advantages come at a price. First, incorporation in Wisconsin may require a filing fee. Second, a corporation pays taxes just like any other entity. The incomes of owners as individuals are also taxed of course, meaning that income to the corporation may be subject to double taxation. However, this disadvantage can be avoided with proper planning and help from a local Dane County lawyer.