Business Basics VI (BBVI) is a locally owned and operated corporate services company in the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI). BBVI offers easy and reliable options for forming and licensing new business entities and ensuring ongoing compliance for existing companies in the USVI. BBVI’s staff has extensive experience navigating USVI governmental agencies and a deep understanding of applicable USVI laws and regulations.
BBVI handles every aspect of a company formation to ensure our clients start out doing business on the right foot. BBVI offers guidance necessary to stay compliant so clients can focus their time and efforts on their businesses. BBVI also has significant experience in bringing companies into good standing and works with clients to develop a plan for maintaining good standing on an ongoing basis.
BBVI is affiliated with a full service law firm Kellerhals Ferguson Kroblin PLLC (KFK). The attorneys at KFK are available to BBVI and its clients to offer assistance and expertise in a number of areas including real estate, business and personal taxation, litigation, corporate and transactional matters. BBVI is also affiliated with a premier title agency West Indies Title, LLC (WIT). WIT conducts title searches, issues title insurance policies as well as offers additional services relating to the purchase or refinancing of real property. All of our companies work closely to provide cost efficient services to our clients in a timely manner.
The USVI offers a wide array of opportunities for businesses both large and small. Whether you are an existing business or novice entrepreneur BBVI can assist with understanding and meeting all the corporate legal requirements of operating a business. BBVI can take the stress and guess work out of managing the obligations of our clients’ companies so our clients can concentrate on running their businesses. We invite you to call or email today to get a quote for managing your corporate needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What does it mean to form a company or to incorporate?
- To form a company means to form an independent legal entity. This entity, much like an individual, can open a bank account, purchase property, enter into contracts and operate a business. Just like an individual an entity will also have tax obligations regarding any income it earns. There are several different types of business entities, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
- Why form a company?
- Many businesses choose to incorporate or form some type of business entity. A business entity is a distinct and separate entity from its owners. This gives the owners or shareholders of the company asset protection in the case of a lawsuit or claim against the company. Forming a company also gives your business an added degree of credibility and since the name must be approved as a distinct name from any existing companies this gives your business a stronger brand identity.
- What are the different types of companies?
- There are advantages and disadvantages to each type of business entity. It is important to consult an attorney and/or accountant to understand what type of business entity is right for you. The primary types of business entities include limited liability companies, corporations, and partnerships. More specifically there are C corporations and S corporations which are treated differently for tax purposes and have different requirements. There are also several types of partnerships including general partnerships, limited partnership, limited liability partnerships and limited liability limited partnerships. The primary difference between each type of partnership is the degree of liability protection for each of the partners.
- What is a corporation?
- A corporation is a separate legal entity from its owners which offers the owners personal asset liability protection. This means the owners are not personally liable should a claim be brought against the corporation. The corporation is a tried and true entity type that has been in existence for longer than any other entity type. A corporation’s owners are called shareholder or stockholders and a corporation is also required to have a board of directors and officers. Corporations are required to hold meetings each year and have strict record keeping requirements. Corporations can issue stock as a means of raising capital and offer a greater variety of benefit plans like stock options and employee stock purchase plans which are not available for other types of business entities.
- What is the difference between a company and a sole proprietor or unregistered partnership?
- Unlike corporations and LLCs, a sole proprietorship or unregistered partnership is not required to file any legal documents with the state or territory. Both business structures can operate without any formal organizing or operating procedures. Therefore there are no initial filing or formation fees so the enterprise is cheaper to start. However sole proprietorships and general partnerships do not offer the personal asset protection of a LLC or a corporation.
- Do I need a business license?
- Conducting business in the USVI requires obtaining a business license and potentially additional permits from one or multiple government agencies. It is important to understand what licenses are required for each business activity you are engaged in and/or for each service your business provides.
- What is a resident agent?
- A resident agent is a local contact listed with the state or territory where a company exists or is registered to conduct business. A resident agent is contacted regarding corporate filings and most importantly accepts service of process on behalf the company. Maintaining a resident agent is critical to maintaining the good standing of your company.
- How do I relocate my company to the USVI?
- Should you wish to relocate your company to the USVI you must register or qualify your company with the USVI government. This includes filing the proper corporate documents with the Office of the Lieutenant Governor and obtaining a business license from the proper government agency. It also requires obtaining a local resident agent and understanding local tax and corporate filing obligations.
- What is a limited liability company?
- A limited liability company or LLC is also a separate legal entity apart from its owners. LLCs offer the same liability protection as a corporation but have different structure and compliance obligations. In general a LLC is slightly more expensive to maintain. Annual franchise taxes and government filing fees are usually higher for LLCs than corporations. However a LLC requires less maintenance or paperwork and does not require the formal management structure of a corporation. A LLC has a greater flexibility when choosing how it is treated for tax purposes. By default a LLC is a pass through entity meaning the entity itself is not taxed, instead the income flows through to the owners. The reporting requirements for a LLC mirrors that of a sole proprietorship if it is a single owner or partnership if there are multiple owners. LLCs can also elect to be treated as a C corporation or as a S corporation for tax purposes.