Structure Your Business For Success

Getting your business structure right is critical.  It will have an impact on material issues moving forward including protection of your personal liability, ability to attract new investors, legal and regulatory compliance and tax obligations.  

As a startup founder there are numerous structures for you to choose from including a company limited by shares, partnership, operating as a sole trader or various trust structures. The best business structure for your startup will depend on your individual needs, the nature of your business, the size of your venture and your business goals.

Changing the business structure can be costly and complex so it is critical to choose the right business structure at the outset. At Allied Legal's commercial lawyers are experts in advising on issues pertaining to business structure. Our startup focused expertise means that we provide tactical advice on the best way to structure your business to ensure its ongoing success.

Company Structures

A company has shareholders who own the company and directors who run it. A company is a separate legal entity which means that it protects your personal. liability as the owner(s).

Adopting a company structure allows for growth and expansion as you can introduce new shareholders by issuing shares to them.  

There are various types of companies including proprietary limited companies, public companies and company limited by guarantee.


Trusts are common forms of business and asset ownership structures. Allied Legal's team of specialist commercial lawyers have assisted individuals, families, SMEs and large organisations structure their businesses and investment structures to achieve financial and other commercial objectives through various types of trusts.

There are a number of different types of trusts including discretionary trusts, unit trusts, bare trusts, fixed trusts and charitable trusts.


A partnership is formed when between two - twenty people go into business together. Partnerships are governed by the Partnership Act. 

Partnerships can either be general or limited, which indicates the level of liability taken on by the partners.

Sole Trader

A sole trader is a self-employed person who owns and runs their business as an individual. The individual is legally responsible for all aspects of the business including debts and losses. You can still hire people under this business structure.

Many tradespeople operate their businesses as a sole trader.

Incorporated Associations

An incorporated association is a registered legal entity that's usually established for recreational, cultural or charitable purposes. It must have at least 5 members and put all profits back into the association's activities.

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Rahul has a deep understanding of the legal requirements of SME’s and start-ups, and is one of the few law firms I have worked with that truly adopts a relationship-based approach. If you’re looking for a legal partner to grow with your business, I can strongly recommend Allied Legal.

- Ryan Smyth - Stratium Group Pty Ltd

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