Good News For LLPs

DQC Bureau
New Update

One interesting aspect of the Union Budget announcement this year was the

laying of the tax structure for limited liability partnerships (LLP). When LLPs

were introduced in 2008, it was aimed more at helping professionals like

chartered accountants or lawyers to start business without going for the

traditional partnership model and instead have a more corporate structure. But

it has its resonance for the channel business as well.


In an LLP, no single partner is responsible for another partner's misconduct

or negligence and each have limited liability for the other individual's

protection within the partnership. This

ensures that if one partner in the alliance is responsible for errors,
omissions, incompetence, or negligence, then the other partner's liability for

the same is limited.

Now why is this interesting news for solution providers?

Typically most channel organizations are family owned businesses where the
entrepreneurs are hesitant to have outsiders as partners, fearing that the

latter might engage in inappropriate

activity which would become a liability for the entire organization. But with
the LLP each partner's liability is limited to his stake in the company and the

others are shielded from the liability of his wrongful acts.

This means that partners can go ahead with more partnerships, as an LLP does

not have a limit to the number of partners who can be on board. This in turn

will lead to infusion of funds and also help in expanding the business with the

inclusion of several players.



the Budget announcement, the taxation laws did not permit several professionals

to carry business only through partnership firms as the income tax law did not

recognise an LLP. Also there was a chance of double taxation if an LLP

registered in India decided to spread its business to other countries.

In the UK and most European nations, the tax liability in LLPs falls on

individual partners. In the US, a flexible system exists where partners decide

whether they or the firm will be taxed.

Now the Union Budget has decreed that LLPs will be treated similar to general

partnerships under the Indian Partnership Act, 1932. This means that the profits

and losses of the outfit would not pass through in the hands of the partners but

would be assessable in the hands of the LLP.


There are a few partners I had the opportunity of speaking to recently who

were very enthused about this development and are going through the fine print

to see how they can now invite more people to partner with them in an LLP. And

given that LLPs are easy to set up as compared to the legal procedures of

setting up a company, and as easy to dissolve, would this finally lead to more

consolidated within the channel community?

Vinita Bhatia