1.7 The Legal Forms of Business

We normally group business organizations into three legal categories: proprietorships, partnerships, and corporations. Over time, a business may change from one type of business organization to another. Some firms fail, some remain as small businesses, and some become large, multinational companies. Each form of business organization offers advantages and disadvantages.


A sole proprietorship is a business owned entirely by an individual. With this form of business, a person does business in his or her own name. It is the simplest and least complicated business organization, with the least amount of formal documentation required. It is also the least regulated form of business. In the United States, ...

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