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Old 08-19-2011, 11:17 AM   #1
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Business registration as a Freelancer?

Hey guys I have a question regarding business registration.

If I were to become a freelancer (developer/photographer) would I have to have it as a registered business?
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Old 08-21-2011, 12:25 PM   #2
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freelancer just means you work for yourself.

so, with that you can have three different liability protections

1. Sole-proprietorship
2. Partnership
3. Corporation
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Old 08-22-2011, 06:10 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nssan View Post
freelancer just means you work for yourself.

so, with that you can have three different liability protections

1. Sole-proprietorship
2. Partnership
3. Corporation
Nssan is on the right track but your business structure needs more consideration than simply liability protection. Liability protection is one of the questions you need to ask yourself but there are many more.

Consider this:

(1) What will be your business name? If it's anything more than simply your first and last name, then you will need to apply for a Name Approval.
(2) As a sole proprietor: (a) you don't need to file a separate income tax return (but you still need to keep separate accounting records); (b) you won't need a lawyer to help you set up your business; (c) you have unlimited liability and your personal assets are at risk if you royally f*** up but, really, there's not much third party liability risk as a freelance photography/designer
(3) As a partnership: I really don't think you'll set up a partnership as, IMHO, it's the worst type of business structure; ergo, I will pass on discussion thereof
(4) As a corporation: (a) you'll file a separate tax return; (b) you'll need a lawyer to help you set up your corporate records, unless, you are paper savvy enough to go at it alone; (c) only your corporate assets are at risk (unless you personally guarantee your corporate liabilities).
(5) Registering as a corporation also gives you some level of protection against someone else who sets up a business with a similar name. It's not the same level of protection as a trademark registration but at least you'll know that no one else in BC will be able to register the same corporate name.


Regardless of your business structure, you'll need to think about whether or not you want to be an HST registrant. If your gross revenues are more than $30K in a year or more than $30K in a rolling quarter year then you MUST register as an HST registrant. If not, then registering as an HST registrant is optional for you. HST registrants are able to file an HST return to get a refund on the HST paid for all qualifying business expenses. However, HST registrants must also collect HST on sales of all taxable supplies (which, relative to your competition who might not be an HST registrant, makes your product/service 12% more expensive).

Anyways, those are just a few things that you need to consider. Starting a business is super exciting but you MUST and SHOULD develop a business plan first and be very objective and skeptical of your own prospects. It's easy to see everything through rosy glasses.
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Old 08-22-2011, 06:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adrnlnrush00 View Post
Nssan is on the right track but your business structure needs more consideration than simply liability protection. Liability protection is one of the questions you need to ask yourself but there are many more.

Consider this:

(1) What will be your business name? If it's anything more than simply your first and last name, then you will need to apply for a Name Approval.
(2) As a sole proprietor: (a) you don't need to file a separate income tax return (but you still need to keep separate accounting records); (b) you won't need a lawyer to help you set up your business; (c) you have unlimited liability and your personal assets are at risk if you royally f*** up but, really, there's not much third party liability risk as a freelance photography/designer
(3) As a partnership: I really don't think you'll set up a partnership as, IMHO, it's the worst type of business structure; ergo, I will pass on discussion thereof
(4) As a corporation: (a) you'll file a separate tax return; (b) you'll need a lawyer to help you set up your corporate records, unless, you are paper savvy enough to go at it alone; (c) only your corporate assets are at risk (unless you personally guarantee your corporate liabilities).
(5) Registering as a corporation also gives you some level of protection against someone else who sets up a business with a similar name. It's not the same level of protection as a trademark registration but at least you'll know that no one else in BC will be able to register the same corporate name.


Regardless of your business structure, you'll need to think about whether or not you want to be an HST registrant. If your gross revenues are more than $30K in a year or more than $30K in a rolling quarter year then you MUST register as an HST registrant. If not, then registering as an HST registrant is optional for you. HST registrants are able to file an HST return to get a refund on the HST paid for all qualifying business expenses. However, HST registrants must also collect HST on sales of all taxable supplies (which, relative to your competition who might not be an HST registrant, makes your product/service 12% more expensive).

Anyways, those are just a few things that you need to consider. Starting a business is super exciting but you MUST and SHOULD develop a business plan first and be very objective and skeptical of your own prospects. It's easy to see everything through rosy glasses.
Either you are an accountant or a business owner. Def. not an avg joe. OP this guy speaks the truth.

I however disagree on the bolded part - as per the PRO HST'ers, a biz charging hst is no less competitive than one not charging. According to them, a business charging hst should be able to offer lower prices when compared one that does not charge hst, given all the input taxes that can be claimed. I hope you voted Yes - on the referendum.

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Old 08-22-2011, 06:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xmisstrinh View Post
Either you are an accountant or a business owner. Def. not an avg joe. OP this guy speaks the truth.

I however disagree on the bolded part - as per the PRO HST'ers, a biz charging hst is no less competitive than one not charging. According to them, a business charging hst should be able to offer lower prices when compared one that does not charge hst, given all the input taxes that can be claimed. I hope you voted Yes - on the referendum.

Tiger_H
Thanks Tiger_H, I am an articling student and a business owner.

I acknowledge your comment in respect of HST registrants being no less competitive than their non-HST registrant competition. However, my reference to an HST registrant being more expensive is through the eyes of the customer and is more a marketing perception than reality.

I voted no on the HST referendum as I do believe that the HST is good for BC's economy. But I'll leave it at that as I don't want to digress this thread from the OP's original question.
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adrnlnrush00 View Post
Nssan is on the right track but your business structure needs more consideration than simply liability protection. Liability protection is one of the questions you need to ask yourself but there are many more.

Consider this:

(1) What will be your business name? If it's anything more than simply your first and last name, then you will need to apply for a Name Approval.
(2) As a sole proprietor: (a) you don't need to file a separate income tax return (but you still need to keep separate accounting records); (b) you won't need a lawyer to help you set up your business; (c) you have unlimited liability and your personal assets are at risk if you royally f*** up but, really, there's not much third party liability risk as a freelance photography/designer
(3) As a partnership: I really don't think you'll set up a partnership as, IMHO, it's the worst type of business structure; ergo, I will pass on discussion thereof
(4) As a corporation: (a) you'll file a separate tax return; (b) you'll need a lawyer to help you set up your corporate records, unless, you are paper savvy enough to go at it alone; (c) only your corporate assets are at risk (unless you personally guarantee your corporate liabilities).
(5) Registering as a corporation also gives you some level of protection against someone else who sets up a business with a similar name. It's not the same level of protection as a trademark registration but at least you'll know that no one else in BC will be able to register the same corporate name.


Regardless of your business structure, you'll need to think about whether or not you want to be an HST registrant. If your gross revenues are more than $30K in a year or more than $30K in a rolling quarter year then you MUST register as an HST registrant. If not, then registering as an HST registrant is optional for you. HST registrants are able to file an HST return to get a refund on the HST paid for all qualifying business expenses. However, HST registrants must also collect HST on sales of all taxable supplies (which, relative to your competition who might not be an HST registrant, makes your product/service 12% more expensive).

Anyways, those are just a few things that you need to consider. Starting a business is super exciting but you MUST and SHOULD develop a business plan first and be very objective and skeptical of your own prospects. It's easy to see everything through rosy glasses.
Thanks for all that information! Cleared a lot more things up . I think I'll be a sole-proprietorship right now. It makes a lot more sense to take this path for me.
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