When beginning a business, you must decide what form of business entity to establish. Your form of business determines which income tax return form you have to file. The most common forms of business are the sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, and S corporation. A Limited Liability Company (LLC) is a business structure allowed by state statute. Legal and tax considerations enter into selecting a business structure.
LP, Limited partnership: a partnership where at least one partner (the general partner, which may itself be an entity or an individual) has unlimited liability for the LP's debts and one or more partners (the limited partners) have limited liability (which means that they are not responsible for the LP's debts beyond the amount they agreed to invest). Limited partners generally do not participate in the management of the entity or its business.
Company (khevra, חברה) – for-profit entity which may engage in any lawful activity. Most companies limit the liability of their shareholders. In that case, the phrase "Limited" or the abbreviation "Ltd." must appear as part of the full name of the company. The term "B.M."/"BM" (בע"מ), literally: by limited liability/warranty, is usually translated as "Ltd." in English and pronounced "ba'AM" in Hebrew. Companies are governed by the Companies Act, 5759-1999 (חוק החברות, תשנ"ט-1999). Few sections are still in force from the Companies Ordinance [New Form], 5743-1983 (פקודת החברות [נוסח חדש], תשמ"ג-1983).
LLP, Limited Liability Partnership: a partnership where a partner's liability for the debts of the partnership is limited except in the case of liability for acts of professional negligence or malpractice. In some states, LLPs may only be formed for purposes of practicing a licensed profession, typically attorneys, accountants and architects. This is often the only form of limited partnership allowed for law firms (as opposed to general partnerships).