Monday, August 20, 2012

Book Review: Limited Liability Companies for Dummies

Most. Useful. Textbook. Ever.


We've all gone through any number of textbooks that were rubbish. Science textbooks that didn't explain anything. Math textbooks that really thought they were explaining things, but didn't. English textbooks that are really just a collection of short stories. Programming textbooks that tell you everything but how to start a new program or how to compile it. Programming textbooks that tell you everything but how to use the libraries that you bought the damn book to figure out! And, even some medical textbooks that I've worked on that don't actually tell me anything useful. I guess the doctors are already supposed to know what I was looking for and need to know the more bureaucratic rubbish in the books I'm thinking of.

But "Limited Liability Companies for Dummies" is different. This book is incredibly useful. Naturally, if you're not looking to start an LLC this book would seem pretty lame. But if you're interested in starting a company AND cover your ass from lawsuits you're gonna love this book. The author writes as if she's sitting at a table with you explaining the problems and pitfalls in running different kinds of companies and how to avoid them. You can read straight through like I did, minus a few sections that had nothing to do with what I was interested in, or you can skip around. She understands that most people won't want to read the whole thing but will flip straight to what interests them. So it's not just early chapters pointing at later chapters that expand on certain topics, but later chapters point at earlier chapters for the same reason.

Even if you don't want to start a company, the book lists other reasons to form an LLC. The family farm has been operating with liability insurance for decades. But my brother may want to run things different since he doesn't live on the farm or because he may need to take on a partner. Someone else might be interested in using an LLC for estate planning.

I used to be dubious of the Dummies books. The early stuff seemed to be "Light Switches For Dummies". But when I wanted something on LLCs the first thing I thought of was this book. Then I looked for other books on the subject and came back to this one.

I've got one LLC for a rental property that is pending. I'm gonna start up two more for the houses I'm getting very soon (possibly this week). I'm using the company owned by the author of this book to act as my Registered Agents (see the book for details) largely because I found the book so damn useful.

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