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To LLC Or Not To LLC? If this is the question you're trying to answer, our Legal Expert can help you decide if this business form is right for you.

By Joan E. Lisante

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Deciding whether to scramble aboard the LLC bandwagon is one ofthe most important decisions you'll make in forming yourstart-up, so it shouldn't be taken lightly-no matter whatthe headlines say. An LLC structure gives you the flexibility andtax benefits of a partnership plus the personal liabilityprotection of a corporation. In 1977, Wyoming became the firststate to adopt the LLC format, rooted in European and LatinAmericans laws, and the 49 other states have since signed on. Butshould you?

Not without thinking about what your personal and business needsare. As Marc-DavidSeidel, assistant professor of management at the McCombs Schoolof Business at the University of Texas, Austin, puts it: "Askyourself if you really need the additional liability protectionoffered by the LLC structure. If not, it's less expensive andmuch easier on the paperwork to simply operate as a soleproprietorship."

And Seidel isn't lecturing from an ivory tower, either. Hestarted two LLCs, both operating through a system of contracts withthird-party providers. Let's look at the advantages an LLCoffers.

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