LLC vs S-Corp For Independent Contractor | Which Is Best!

LLC vs S-Corp For Independent Contractor

LLC vs S-Corp For Independent Contractor | Which Is Best!


The USA is a land built on free enterprise and small business. With this in mind, there are a plethora of business options that an entrepreneur or independent contractor can choose from when starting their own company.

Many people choose to incorporate knowing that the limited liability corporation offers both tax advantages and a stronger sense of protection from liability.

While there are multiple types of business structures available the S Corporation vs LLC issue is one that is often debated. This article seeks to provide clarity to small business owners regarding the advantages and disadvantages of choosing an LLC vs S Corporation for independent contractor businesses.


A limited liability business is a legal classification that can safeguard small-business owners from individual liability in business obligations. Owners of LLCs are called members. LLCs can have one owner (single-member LLC) or more than one owner (multi-member LLC). Owner-employees of LLCs are self-employed.

LLCs use a formal service structure, while they can likewise be taxed likewise to sole proprietorships or collaborations. An LLC is more flexible than a corporation in company and profit distribution.

An LLC can likewise choose tax as a corporation, and owners can conserve cash by choosing S corp. tax status.

What Is an S Corp.?

An S corporation is a tax classification that can protect small-business owners’ assets from double tax. An S corp. uses pass-through tax, meaning an owner claims a share of company profits on their private tax return. This makes sure earnings aren’t double-taxed (once under the corporation and once again under the owner).

The “S” in S corp. means “subchapter,” since an S corp. is a subchapter corporation. When including a business, you’ll first form a C corp. that should satisfy S corp. requirements to be so categorized. The requirements include choosing S corp. status 2 months and fifteen days after officially organizing your business (for the status to affect the current tax year), capping ownership at 100 people (not entities or partnerships), and limiting those owner shares to U.S. citizens just. If you form an LLC, you’ll also need to file IRS Type 2553 to elect a tax classification.

S corp. owners can be company workers. Owner-employees must pay themselves a reasonable salary for their work. They’ll pay federal and state income tax, Medicare tax, and Social Security tax on that wage. Owners get extra earnings as distributions, which aren’t subject to Medicare and Social Security taxes.


What’s the Difference Between an S Corp. and an LLC?

As we discussed above, an S corp. is a tax classification, while an LLC is an organizational entity. This implies that an LLC can attain S corp. status if it fulfills certain criteria. Nevertheless, LLCs and S corporations require different management and shareholder structures and have unique reporting requirements. We’ll dig into these distinctions below.

Owner Work

S corporations can employ their owners and pay them a wage. An LLC that is dealt with as a corporation can also pay owners a salary. If your LLC makes a profit after paying owners a sensible income, you might conserve money on taxes by choosing S corporation taxation.

Secret Takeaways:

S Corp. Owner can be hands-off or take a wage as a business employee
LLC. The owner can be hands-off or take part in organizational management
Ownership Structure
By default, an LLC runs the same way as a sole proprietorship or partnership. However, an LLC can have unrestricted owners (members) from all over the world; these owners can also be another corporate entity.

An S corp. must be a U.S. organization owned by U.S. residents and can not have more than 100 owners. Beyond individuals, S corporations limit ownership to trusts and estates.

Secret Takeaways:

S Corp. 100 or fewer owners; need to be U.S. residents or U.S.-based trusts
LLC. Limitless owners with no constraints on category or nationality

Management Structure

A corporation has a board of directors who make high-level decisions about running a business. Shareholders are accountable for electing directors to the board. Officer roles like a president, vice president, and treasurer also exist to handle daily company operations outside the responsibilities of the board of directors.


Managers run LLCs rather than directors. Owners can participate in management (a member-managed LLC), or elect to employ managers to take on the duty (a manager-managed LLC). An LLC can also select to designate officer functions if that structure makes good sense within business strategy.

Key Takeaways:

S Corp.: Shareholders choose a board of directors; officers run daily operations
LLC: Managers run everyday operations and can appoint officers if wanted
Stock and Shareholders
An S corp. can just release typical stock, which offers voting rights to shareholders. An LLC can not provide stock and does not have investors, but rather should pay members according to the LLC’s articles of the company. If you choose to integrate your LLC with S corp. classification, you can’t release stock.

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Key Takeaways:

S Corp. Common stock with shareholder voting rights
LLC. No stock or shareholders at all
Tax Liability and Reporting Requirements
Standard taxation for LLCs mirrors sole proprietorships (for single-member LLCs) and partnerships (for multi-member LLCs). Single- and multi-member LLCs can also choose to be taxed as C corporations or S corporations if they fulfill eligibility requirements. Non-S corp. LLC owners need to pay a 15.3% self-employment tax on all net profits *.

S corporations have looser tax and filing requirements than C corporations. An S corp. is not subject to corporate income tax and all earnings pass through the company. A-C corp. must pay taxes quarterly in addition to owners paying yearly income tax on their share of the profits.

Secret Takeaways:


S Corp.: Owner can take an income and prevent self-employment taxes on the rest of profits
LLC: Owner should pay self-employment tax on all net earnings if taxed as a sole proprietorship or collaboration
Cost To Develop
The expense of establishing an LLC and choosing an S corp. Status can vary depending upon elements like which state you live in and whether you perform service throughout state lines. Legal aid will cost additional, but will likely conserve you cash and time while helping you prevent typical errors.

The average cost of filing articles of incorporation, not consisting of lawyer fees, varies from $100 to $250 * depending upon the particular state you file in. Forming an LLC expense between $50 and $500, depending on the state. If you do service in other states as an LLC, you’ll require to register to carry out a company in each of those states, which will cost an additional foreign business registration fee.

Secret Takeaways:

S Corp.: incorporation costs range from $100 to $250.
LLC: development fees differ from one state to another, varying from $50 to $500.
LLC vs. S Corp.: Which Alternative Is Best For You?
LLCs and S corporations are different elements of business structure. Picking to pursue one, both, or neither category might benefit your company in different methods. Take into account your needs when running a company, and ask yourself the following concerns to get a better idea of which designation is ideal for you.

The number of owners have a stake in your organization?
Are all of your company partners U.S. people?
Does a collaboration or corporation have a stake in your company?
How would a self-employment tax affect your net profit?
The answers to these questions can help you figure out the fit of an LLC classification or S corp– category for your organization. Listed below, we’ll explore how the possible answers might affect you and your profits.

An S Corp. May Be Best For You If.
S corp. tax classification may be best for your company if you have strategies to scale. S corporations require extra tax returns and payroll systems, which may not deserve the inconvenience if your business breaks even or makes a small revenue. With an S corporation, you can likewise contribute more cash to retirement strategies and place your service for growth.

Independently, an S corporation may be right for you if your business reaches a constant level of growth. A 15.3% self-employment tax levied on an LLC’s revenues is a steep tax liability to pay when profits begin to tick upward.

An LLC May Be Best For You If.
You might wish to develop an LLC if you’re concerned about personal liability but want very little service maintenance. Legal requirements determining the structure of an LLC are laxer than maintenance requirements for corporations.

Reporting requirements are typically simpler for an LLC than for a corporation. An LLC can have an endless variety of owners. Collaborations, corporations, or noncitizens can own or partly own LLCs. The LLC must submit a yearly or biennial report that provides updates on present members, company places, and other changes.

In this post, we examined the differences between LLC and S-corp for independent contractors to consider when deciding whether or not one entity type is better than the other.

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