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Sunday, July 31, 2011

But Can't I Just Do This Myself?

You'd be suprised how often people ask me this question when it comes to Business Formation, Corporate Formalities, Corporate Governance, and Corporate Record Compliance. The short answer is "yes" you most certainly can, but that doesn't mean you can do it right or even do it at all. I am sure that I "could" do a lot of things such as overhaul the engine in my pick-up, or maybe even build my next home. However, I am smart enough not to attempt to do these things because I don't posess the knowledge or other qualifications to accomplish them. To lend a little more insight in this area, allow me to briefly zero in on a couple of these key areas:
  • Many prospective business owners stumble accross the Articles of Incorporation templates provided on the Secretary of State's web site, fill it out, and send it in with their filing fee. They then assume (wrongfully so) that they own a company and are authorized to operate it. They never bother to read the fine print on the forms that states that this is simply basic information recquired by the Secretary of State's office and may not be suitable documentation for the formation of your entity. They do not have all of the additional foundational documentation that establishes ownership, how ownership was acquired, who has been appointed to govern the entity, who the officers are, what authority the carry, bylaws, stock certificates, a stock ledger, etc. It is only a matter of time before the "can't I just do it myself" approach catches up with them in a big way.
  • A majority of all business owners think that they can manage Corporate Formalities, Corporate Governance, and Corporate Record Compliance issues on their own as well. However, once I begin to educate them on what is required, advise them of some of the serious consequences should they continue to fail in these areas, and demonstrate that they are already face substantial risk... then they begin to realize that they may need help. While it doesn't happen often after they have been fully educated, from time to time I will still get the question "can't I just do this myself?" It is pretty easy to put it to rest when I point out that they obviously haven't been addressing these areas within their business so what makes them think they will do it now...

While I could go on and on with this post, I will end here (for now) and address this further in one of my coming posts!