Types of business forms
The various business forms can be grouped into sole traders, partnerships and incorporated companies. Sole traders and partnerships are distinguished by the fact that the sole trader or partners have unlimited personal liability for the business’s debts. They do not have to do raise any minimum capital.
Incorporated companies have the benefit of limited liability - the members or shareholders are liable only to the extent of their contributions. Depending on the enterprise, this may be a key reason for opting for an incorporated company.
- Business person
- Private company (GbR)
- General partnership (OHG)
- Partner company (PartG)
- Limited partnership (KG)
- Company with limited liability & limited partnership company (GmbH & Co. KG)
- Company with limited liability (GmbH)
- Entrepreneurial company (UG)
- Public limited company (AG)
- Registered cooperative (eG)
Tip: Information & advice
Your STARTERCENTER NRW will provide you with preliminary information on selecting the legal form of the business. We would advise you to seek expert legal and tax advice when making your ultimate selection.