Structuring Your Business

Brisbane CBD

Legal entities and structuring

Establishing your business in Australia, more specifically Brisbane, is not only an attractive proposition, it is an easy process. The laws and regulations governing a foreign entity establishing a business or investing in Brisbane are maintained at a national level. When structuring your business in Australia, it is important to consider these laws and regulations to ensure you establish a business structure that is most suitable to your business needs. 

In Australia, a business can be structured in a variety of ways, including as a limited liability company, a branch, a joint venture or a unit trust. Discretionary trusts, partnerships, and limited partnerships can also be used. A limited liability company can take different forms, but the most usual is a limited liability company that issues shares. A foreign corporation may establish a representative office in Australia, which may promote the products or services of a foreign enterprise in the Australian market and refer enquiries from potential customers to the foreign enterprise.

Branch versus subsidiary

Generally, foreign companies tend to prefer to establish as a subsidiary rather than a branch for a number of reasons including: the ability to contract with third parties using a local entity; its limited liability; and its greater ease of an operating structure. Branches are rarely used. However, if you were establishing offices/employees in Brisbane, then the branch would effectively be taxed as if it were a subsidiary.

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