Business Formation/Dissolution

Business formation attorney Alex Gilanians has decades of experience helping entrepreneurs in Los Angeles (and throughout California) start new businesses. If you are thinking about starting a company in Los Angeles, or if you’re looking to expand your business by forming a new business entity, we can help you meet your objectives.

Consulting with a business attorney before starting a company (or before reorganizing one) is paramount to ensuring your long term success. The proper legal structure is crucial to protecting your interests and maximizing the potential of your business.

Finding a business formation attorney in Los Angeles

Los Angeles business formation attorney Alex Gilanians understands the importance of building the proper legal structure as the foundation for your business. Consulting with a business formation lawyer at the outset will help ensure that your business is protected from future legal challenges, and poised for success from the start.

Our company formation attorney services handle 12 legal structures

There are many different legal structures available to conduct business in Los Angeles, and throughout the state of California, including:

  • • C corporations
  • • S corporations
  • • Professional corporations (PC)
  • • Limited Liability Companies (LLC)
  • • Partnerships
  • • Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP)
  • • Limited Partnerships (LP)
  • • Sole proprietorships
  • • Joint ventures

Starting a business in California

Starting a company in Los Angeles and throughout California begins by partnering with a business formation attorney who is knowledgeable and experienced. Alex Gilanians can help new business owners (as well as business owners who are restructuring or expanding) with everything from securing financing to corporate formation to reducing tax burdens.

When you are ready to start a business in California, we will review each type of business entity with you and guide you through the process of determining the best legal structure for your company. Then, we will walk you through the logistics of forming your chosen business entity, and review with you all of the necessary documentation.

Once your business is established, we will continue to build on our relationship to help your company thrive, and are always available to consult, guide and represent you and your business, if and when the need arises.

Contact us for a business formation consultation today

Forming a new business in California can be confusing and complicated. Let business formation lawyer Alex Gilanians guide you through the process, so you can focus on turning your dream company into a reality.

Business Formation FAQs

How do I register a new business in California?
Starting a business in Los Angeles (and all of California) is a multi-step process, including:

Selecting the Best Entity – Choosing the best type of legal entity for your business is the first step in forming a California business. We’ll help you choose between a corporation, a partnership, an LLC, or any other business structure.

Registration – Once you’ve selected your legal entity, we’ll help you file and register with the California Secretary of State.

Documentation – Each type of California legal entity requires certain types of legal documents. We will help prepare and review these documents with you.

What documents does a new business need?
Our Los Angeles business formation lawyers will help your business prepare the following types of documents:

  • • Articles of Incorporation or Organization
  • • Bylaws
  • • Shareholder or partnership agreements
  • • Employment contracts and policies
  • • Operating agreements

Each type of business entity requires its own set of documents, and experienced business formation attorney Alex Gilanians is familiar with each. Below is a sampling of what your business may require depending on the type of entity you elect.


  • • Articles of Incorporation
  • • Bylaws • Opening Minutes
  • • EIN number (the identity of the corporation for tax purposes)
  • • First Organizational Meeting
  • • Explanations for stockholders
  • • Employee contracts and policies
  • • Business license registration with local city or county
  • • Statement of Information filed with the Secretary of State


  • • Articles of Organization (Form LLC-1) to create an LLC in California
  • • Application to Register (Form LLC-5) for non-California LLCs
  • • Statement of Information within 90 days after filing Form LLC-1 or 5
  • • Certificate of Amendment (Form LLC-2) to make changes to the LLC-1
  • • Certificate of Correction (Form LLC-11) to make corrections to the LLC-1
  • • Business license registration with local city or county (if conducting business with the public)


  • • A Partnership Agreement
  • • Filing a fictitious business name with the county clerk
  • • Obtaining business licenses, permits, and zoning clearance (for property development)
  • • Obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN) for paying federal taxes; and
  • • The option to file a “Statement of Partnership Authority” (Form GP-1), or “Application to Register a Limited
  • • Partnership” (Form LLP-1) with the Secretary of State

Joint Ventures

  • • Memorandum of Understanding
  • • Joint Venture Agreement
  • • Ancillary agreements
  • • Obtaining regulatory approval (if required)

Sole Proprietorship

  • • File a fictitious business name with the county clerk (if using one)
  • • Business license registration with local city or county
  • • Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS
  • • Obtain necessary zoning clearance, licenses, and permits
  • • Publish an announcement of your new business entity in a generally circulated publication (if using a fictitious name)

Whether your business is simply dissolving, or you’re involved in an adversarial dispute and seeking a business divorce, Los Angeles business dissolution attorney Alex Gilanians will protect your interests.

What is Business Dissolution?

Terminating a legal business entity is known as business dissolution. Sometimes it is merely procedural, and other times - like the ending of a marriage - it ends in a confrontational divorce.

Unless there is a dispute involved, dissolving a business typically does not require a judge. However, it is crucial to consult with an experienced business dissolution attorney to make sure you’re protected throughout the process.

Dissolving a business in Los Angeles

Businesses like partnerships, corporations and LLCs based in Los Angeles need to follow California state laws in order to dissolve.

Since 1995, business dissolution lawyer Alex Gilanians has helped many business owners navigate the legal and procedural regulations involved in terminating a business in California. We specialize in ensuring that you and your business are protected from future legal troubles as your business dissolves, and beyond.

Why businesses dissolve in California

There are many different reasons business owners terminate their legal entities, including:

  • • Bankruptcy
  • • Lack of viability
  • • Family disputes
  • • Partner quarrels

No matter the reason for your business dissolution, ensuring your rights are protected is paramount when moving forward.

Types of business dissolution
The majority of business terminations in Los Angeles are voluntary. Here are the various types of business entity dissolutions:

Partnership Dissolution
One or more partners agree to dissolve the partnership.

Corporation Dissolution
Shareholders/directors decide to dissolve the corporation. Generally requires a majority vote of the shareholders. Procedure depends on the Articles of Incorporation.

LLC Dissolution
Usually requires a majority vote by the LLC members. Procedure depends on the Articles of Organization and the Operating Agreement.

Depending upon how your LLC members vote, business dissolution attorney Alex Gilanians will file one of two different certificates with the California Secretary of State:

  • • Certificate of Cancellation: filed if the LLC members vote unanimously to dissolve.
  • • Certificate of Dissolution: filed if the decision to dissolve the LLC is not unanimous.

Contact us for a business dissolution consultation today

When it comes to terminating a business in Los Angeles, your time and energy are as valuable as your physical business assets. Let experienced business dissolution attorney Alex Gilanians help you navigate the process, so you can rest assured that your legal obligations are met — and your best interests remain protected.

We’ll help resolve any partnership disputes, deal with any tax implications, maintain your good standing and relationship with customers, ensure you’re compensated fairly for all assets — and more.

Click here to schedule a business dissolution consultation with Alex Gilanians today.

Business Dissolution Attorney FAQ’s

Why do I need a business dissolution attorney?
Even if you are voluntarily or amicably dissolving your Los Angeles business, it’s best to seek the advice of a business dissolution attorney like Alex Gilanians. We help clients navigate the legal and procedural requirements of terminating a business in California, including drafting and filing necessary forms and documents.

In the event that your business dissolution is adversarial, Alex Gilanians will aggressively pursue the most favorable outcome possible, using the most effective and efficient legal strategy.

What types of business dissolution issues do we handle?
Dissolving a business or divorcing a partnership in California can be extremely complex, even when the termination is not contentious. Experienced business dissolution lawyer Alex Gilanians helps clients with a variety of legal situations, including:

  • • Breach of contract allegations
  • • Denial of contractual obligations by one or more partners
  • • Disputes between professional practice partners over clients as well as physical and financial assets
  • • Investor claims to profits and assets
  • • Quarreling over subsidiary and spin off operations
  • • Corporate shareholder disputes
  • • Property ownership and other real estate issues
  • • Quarrels over debt obligations

What filings are required to dissolve a Los Angeles business entity? Depending upon the type of business entity you wish to dissolve, there are several different types of filings required by the California Secretary of State, including:

  • • Dissolve: Pertains to corporations that were originally incorporated in the state of California.
  • • Surrender: Filed to terminate the California registration of a business entity originally incorporated outside of the state.

California Secretary of State Filings
Three types of filings occur to stop business operations in California depending on the legal entity:

  • • Cancellation – LLCs and partnerships (both domestic and foreign) file forms to cancel their registration with the Secretary of State.
  • • Dissolve – Domestic corporations (originally incorporated in California) file for dissolution with the Secretary of State.
  • • Surrender – Foreign corporations (originally incorporated outside of California) file documents to surrender their registration with the Secretary of State.

Business dissolution attorney Alex Gilanians is well versed in each of the three types of filings required to cease business operations in Los Angeles and the state of California.