Step 2: Understand Business Structures

Last updated on April 30, 2019

Most small businesses are operated as one of the following:

  • Sole proprietorship, the owner/operator or self-employed
  • General partnership, with one or more partner
  • Corporation (also known as a limited liability company)

Small Business BC discusses the pros and cons of each business type and structure.

You can also find more information about the different business structures through BC Registries and Online Services.

There are other business structures, such as societies, franchises and cooperatives to consider:

British Columbia is home to a diverse range of not-for-profit organizations – also known as societies. Learn more 

The Province wants to make sure that franchisees have access to the information they need to help make well informed decisions before purchasing a franchise. That’s why we have created a suite of materials to help inform your decision. Learn more

Corporations Canada (part of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada) provides extensive information on corporations, including the benefits of federal incorporation if you want to expand your business to other provinces.

Step 3: Develop a Business Plan >>>

Ask For Advice

If you are not sure which business structure will be best for your business, we recommend you talk to a lawyer and an accountant to find out what each type requires, both legally and financially.