An accountant was starting a new tax practice in Florida. I suggested he form a professional LLC to be owned by the accountant and at least one other person.. The accountant stated that he did not think anyone other than a licensed accountant could own any part of his business. I suggested he confirm his assumption with the agency that regulates accounting practice in Florida.
Having a second owner of the new accounting business is important because the LLC ownership interest would be protected from judgment creditors in a multi-member LLC but not through a single member LLC. The accountant called me within a week to state that a non-accountant could own a minority interest in his professional LLC.
I suggested that the accountant own 10% of his professional LLC and that the remaining 90% be titled jointly with his non-accountant wife as tenants by entireties. The accountant individually is a person, and member, distinct from the entireties. With this structure 90% of the LLC interest would be protected entireties property in the event of a lawsuit against either spouse. The accountant’s creditors could get only a charging lien against 10% of the LLC interest. I found this to be the most efficient method of protecting the new business against the accountant’s individual creditors.