Business Structure Brisbane

Recognising the pros and cons of different business structures in Brisbane is crucial for the successful launch of your new venture. Each business structure allows for specific activities like capital raising and also influences aspects like asset and risk protection for directors, tax outcomes, and business commitments. Understanding the various benefits of each business structure can be challenging, which is why we offer business structuring services in Brisbane to ensure you begin on the right note.

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Prevalent business structures in Australia:

Business structure refers to an organization’s legal formation. In Australia, four main business structures are predominant:

  • Sole trader
  • Company
  • Partnership
  • Trust

We explain each of these business structures in the following section of this page.

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Selection of the Suitable Business Structure

Selecting the right route can be challenging; however, remember that you’re not confined to one structure and can change your business structure as it evolves. Each of these business structures may influence your expenses, assets, and tax responsibilities. Let’s briefly discuss what each of these business structures entails.

Sole Trader

As a sole trader, you’re legally accountable for all aspects of your business. Usually, a sole trader makes all the business decisions and can employ others to assist them in managing their business.

Tax liability: As an individual, you are liable to pay tax on income earned from sole proprietorship.

If your yearly income surpasses $75,000, you also have to pay GST and submit a business activity statement.


Similar to a sole trader, the owner is personally liable for all business aspects; however, in a partnership, joint ownership is shared by two or more people, and profits and losses are split.

Individuals can pool their resources and skills in a partnership structure, increasing their chances of success. A partnership can also employ staff to help them operate the business.

Tax liability: Partners pay tax individually on their share of the business income. If your annual income surpasses $75,000, you also have to pay GST and submit a business activity statement.


A company, unlike the previous business structures, is a separate legal entity. This means that the company can possess assets and sign contracts with third parties directly.

Tax liability: Companies are subject to corporate tax rates different from individual tax rates. The current company tax rate is either 27.5% or 30%, depending on the criteria you meet. If your annual revenue exceeds $75,000, you also have to pay GST.


A trust is a legal entity where trustees conduct business on behalf of the trust members, also known as beneficiaries. This structure can be challenging to establish and can be expensive.

The trustee is responsible for any debts and liabilities and can either be an individual or a corporation. Trusts are often used to handle, safeguard, and transfer family assets like stock, personal property, and the family business from one generation to the next.

Tax liability: The trustee distributes the business profits to the beneficiaries, who then pay income tax at their individual tax rates on the income received.

Engaging the correct advisor for selecting a Brisbane business structure.

Choosing the suitable business structure is a vital decision that can significantly influence your business’s success and lifespan. It’s crucial to have a competent advisor who can guide you through the process and assist you in making the optimal decision for your unique scenario. Consider the following useful advice on selecting the appropriate business structure advisor in Brisbane to guarantee your business’s success.

Consider expertise: An adept business structure advisor understands the intricacies of business planning and can offer valuable guidance on financial planning, tax planning, and other successful business operation aspects.

Professional qualifications: When seeking a business structure advisor in Australia, ensure their credentials like a Certified Practising Accountant (CPA) or Chartered Accountant (CA).

Industry experience: Engaging a business structure advisor with experience specific to your industry can ensure personalised and effective advice for your business.

Concise communication: Efficient communication is vital when interacting with a business structure advisor. Look for someone who can simplify complicated financial concepts and is responsive and available to answer your queries.

Costs: Before hiring a business structure advisor, ensure you understand their fee structure to align it with your budget and business requirements. At Total Business Partners, we recognize the importance of transparent pricing to ensure sufficient business planning.

Tax implications of your business structure in Brisbane.

Choosing the correct business structure is a crucial decision for any business proprietor. An essential factor to consider is the tax consequences of each structure. In Australia, you can select from several business structures, including sole trader, partnership, company, and trust.

The tax implications for each structure can differ considerably. For instance, a sole trader is personally liable for all business debts and may pay income tax at a higher rate than a company. Conversely, a company may have access to more tax deductions and a lower tax rate but may be subject to additional taxes like dividend imputation.

Choosing the right business structure to meet your unique needs.

Other factors include payroll taxes. If you employ staff, you need to withhold and remit payroll taxes, which can be complex. Your choice of business structure can affect your payroll tax obligations, making it crucial to seek professional advice.

Sales taxes like the Goods and Services Tax (GST) are also a consideration. Depending on your business structure, you may need to register for GST and charge GST on your products or services.

Selecting the right business structure can also aid you in reducing your taxes. For instance, a trust structure may offer more flexibility in income distribution and reducing tax liability. A professional accountant can advise on the best business structure for your unique circumstances and help you minimize your tax obligations.

Understanding liability for different business structures in Brisbane.

In Australia, choosing a business structure is a significant decision that can have considerable legal and financial implications for business owners. The most common business structures include sole trader, partnership, company, and trust. Each structure has its benefits and drawbacks, making it crucial to understand each option’s legal and liability implications before deciding.

For instance, a sole trader is a straightforward and cost-effective structure but exposes the business owner to unlimited personal liability for business debts and legal actions. A partnership also has unlimited liability but shared among the partners.

Sole Trader and Partnership liability laws

While sole traders and partnerships structures have unlimited liability, it’s essential to note their differences. In a partnership, each partner is only liable for their proportion of the partnership’s debts and obligations, while in a sole trader structure, the business owner is solely responsible for all debts and obligations. This means that if the business cannot pay its debts, the sole trader’s personal assets can be seized to pay off the debt, potentially leading to bankruptcy.

In contrast, partnerships may have more resources to draw upon to pay off debts as they can pool their assets and resources. However, partnerships also come with the added complexity of having to navigate shared decision-making and profit-sharing.

Company and Trust liability laws

A company, on the other hand, is a separate legal entity, which means the company is responsible for its debts and legal actions, rather than the owners. This structure provides limited liability protection for shareholders, but it also comes with more legal and regulatory requirements.

Trusts are a more complex structure, but they can provide unique tax advantages and asset protection for beneficiaries. However, they also require careful planning and management to ensure compliance with legal and tax obligations.

Choosing the right business structure requires careful consideration of the business owner’s specific needs and objectives. Seeking advice from a professional accountant or business advisor with expertise in business structure and liability, such as Total Business Partners, can help ensure the chosen structure provides the optimal balance of protection and flexibility for the business.

Business Structure FAQs

What constitutes the four fundamental business structures?

1) The structure of a sole trader business.
2) The formation of a business partnership.
3) Company business formation.
4) Trust business organization.

What does the structure of a business imply?

The structure of a business refers to the legal formation of an enterprise or a company that directly affects its everyday operations. Business structures like a sole proprietorship and partnership are simple to establish as they do not mandate continuous obligations such as holding shareholder meetings or voting. The selection of your business structure is dependent on its goals and specific needs.

How does the business structure I select impact my business?

The selection of the correct business structure is a crucial decision for every business owner.

The structure of a business is a reflection of its legal organization and responsibilities. The business structure you select influences:

  • the amount of taxes you owe
  • recurring reporting duties
  • costs associated with setting up your business
  • how your business functions
  • legal liability.
Could you provide an example of a business structure?

The structure of a business refers to the legal organization of a company, which affects its operations and tax responsibilities. There are various types of business structures, each with its benefits and disadvantages. The most prevalent business structures include sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), corporation, and non-profit organization.

A sole proprietorship is the simplest and least expensive business structure, while corporations provide more legal protection for their owners. The optimal business structure for you depends on factors such as your company’s size, industry, objectives, and financial situation. It is essential to consult a business advisor or accountant to determine the best structure for your business.

What constitutes a sound business structure?

Choosing an appropriate business structure is essential for your success as a business owner. There is no single perfect answer as the best business structure is contingent on your unique circumstances.

However, a sound business structure should provide legal protection, tax benefits, and assist you in achieving your business goals. A common business structure is the limited liability company (LLC) which provides protection for personal assets while offering flexibility in management and tax treatment.

An S-corporation is another popular choice, which offers pass-through taxation and limited liability protection. It’s crucial to seek advice from a qualified professional to determine the most suitable structure for your business.

How should I select a business structure?

Choosing the most suitable business structure is fundamental to your business’s success. There are various factors to consider, such as your business objectives, the size of your business, tax implications, legal considerations, and personal liability.

A sole trader structure is straightforward to establish, but you will be personally liable for any business debts. A partnership structure is similar to a sole trader but involves two or more people. A company structure provides limited liability protection but has more compliance requirements.

A trust structure is appropriate for high-income earners seeking to manage their tax obligations. Total Business Partners can provide custom advice to help you choose the most suitable structure for your business.

What is the most prevalent business structure?

The most frequently used business structure in Australia is the sole trader structure, which comprises about 60% of all businesses. This is followed by the company structure, which makes up around 20% of businesses. The remaining 20% are divided between partnerships, trusts, and other structures.

The optimal business structure for you will depend on factors such as your objectives, tax obligations, liability, and the size of your business. It’s crucial to seek advice from a professional to help you choose the best structure for your specific needs and circumstances.

Why is the structure of a business crucial?

Choosing the right business structure is essential for numerous reasons. The structure can influence your tax obligations, your personal liability, and the ease of operating your business.

For instance, a sole trader may be the simplest structure to set up, but it also means you have unlimited personal liability for your business debts. A company, on the other hand, provides limited liability for the owners, but has more complex tax and regulatory requirements.

A good business structure can also assist you in attracting investors and raising capital. It’s important to consider your unique situation and consult with a professional to determine the best structure for your business.

Sunshine Coast Business Structure location

North Lakes Business Structure location

View some of the additional services we offer in Brisbane to promote success.

At Total Business Partners, our motivation comes from seeing our clients succeed. We strive to deliver the highest level of service and are Xero certified accountants with expertise in structural business planning and financial management. Our comprehensive services are offered throughout Brisbane, including North Lakes, as well as across the Sunshine Coast.

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