Difference between Sole Proprietorship & LLC legal types

⁠What’s the difference between Sole Proprietorship & LLC legal types?

Establishing a company in the United Arab Emirates is an exciting opportunity that also requires careful consideration of various factors like the structure of the business itself. The Limited Liability Company (LLC) and Sole Proprietorship are two of the most popular options you have available to choose from. The functioning of the firm after the company formation in Dubai alongside its tax and legal duties can be greatly impacted by the distinct features, advantages, and disadvantages of each of these structures. We will together examine ⁠what’s the difference between Sole Proprietorship & LLC legal types in the United Arab Emirates in this extensive guide to assist you in making an informed choice for your business venture.

Sole Proprietorship in the UAE

Definition and Organization

In the United Arab Emirates, a firm owned and run by one person is known as a sole proprietorship. Independent and small business owners, consultants, and freelance workers frequently come under this arrangement of a company structure. The owner has total authority over all business-related decisions, including those involving earnings and liabilities. It is important to remember that in sole proprietorship, the owner and the company are regarded as one legal entity.

Financial and Legal Consequences

The owner is legally liable indefinitely since the business and the owner are the same. This implies that responsibilities and debts incurred by the firm can potentially be paid using the personal assets of the owner. Even if this might be risky, it also means that the owner keeps all of the earnings.

Licensing and Registration

The Department of Economic Development (DED) of the right emirate must provide a professional license to the owner for them to start a business in sole proprietorship in the United Arab Emirates. In comparison to other business forms, the process is comparatively simple and less expensive. Nonetheless, further permissions from the appropriate authorities could be needed for some professional services.


The simplified tax structure comes on top of all the major benefits that a sole proprietorship offers. Since the money received from the business is regarded as personal income, it is subject to personal income taxes. Since there isn’t a personal income tax in the UAE right now, many businesses find this to be an appealing choice. However, according to the business activities undertaken by the sole proprietorship, they may be subject to Corporate Tax if they conduct business activities depending on certain criteria.

Limited Liability Company (LLC) in the UAE

Meaning and Organization

A hybrid company organization called an LLC includes aspects of both partnerships and corporations. From two to fifty shareholders can set up an LLC in the United Arab Emirates. Liability for each shareholder is restricted to their percentage of ownership in the corporation while shielding private assets from financial obligations.

Financial and Legal Effects

An LLC’s greatest benefit is the restricted liability protection it provides to its owners. This arrangement guarantees the protection of personal assets in the event that the company faces bankruptcy or legal problems. In addition, an LLC offers more freedom than a sole proprietorship as it can get involved in a wider variety of business ventures.

Licensing and Registration

According to the type of business you choose, establishing an LLC in the United Arab Emirates also requires a commercial license from the DED and many additional permissions. The complexity and expense are more when it comes to an LLC compared with a sole proprietorship. A local Emirati patron who owns at least 51% of the LLC’s shares is also required, but there are options for negotiating the profit distribution.


The tax system in the United Arab Emirates offers a great business landscape for LLCs to profit from it. Although there isn’t a federal corporate tax, some emirates may have municipal taxes, and businesses in some sectors, including banking and oil, may have extra fees and taxes. After all, the lower tax burden makes the UAE a great location for entrepreneurs to establish LLCs here.

Differences Between Sole Proprietorship and LLC in the UAE

Sole Proprietorship

  • Totally owned and operated by one person. All decisions are made by the owner, who also takes all risks and profits.
  • There is an unrestricted responsibility on the part of the owner of the sole proprietorship and that puts personal belongings in danger.
  • It is easy to set up and requires a professional license, saving money.
  • Usually restricted to small-scale businesses and professional services.


  • Owned by a number of investors, up to fifty. Decisions are frequently made collaboratively, and control is shared. Divided among the stockholders is the risk.
  • Limited liability protects shareholders’ personal assets in addition to their investment in the business.
  • More difficult setup requirements, including local sponsoring, commercial license, and compliance with stricter rules.
  • Is more scalable and able to participate in a wider variety of economic operations.
  • Gains from a beneficial tax structure that excludes federal corporation tax but allows for possible municipal levies.

Selecting the Appropriate Structure for Your Company

The following elements should be taken into account while choosing between an LLC and a sole proprietorship in the UAE:

The Nature of the Enterprise

Whereas commercial operations are often more appropriate for an LLC, professional services may be more suitable for sole proprietorships.

Tolerance for Risk

A sole proprietorship can be the best option if you are comfortable accepting personal accountability. An LLC is a superior option if safeguarding personal assets is important.

Plans for Growth

An LLC offers additional scalability and investment appeal for companies planning to develop and expand.

Expense and intricacy

Consider the expenses and difficulty of setup and upkeep. A sole proprietorship is more affordable and easier to establish than an LLC, which requires more labor and compliance with the law.

Choose the best company structure for your requirement

In the UAE, selecting between a sole proprietorship and an LLC depends on a number of variables. Every business structure in the UAE including LLCs and sole proprietorships has a different set of advantages and disadvantages. You can arrive at an informed choice that fits both your personal tastes and your company goals by being aware of these distinctions before choosing from sole proprietorship and LLC Company formation in Dubai.

Because of the UAE’s vibrant business climate, advantageous tax laws, and continuous legal changes, sole proprietorships and limited liability companies (LLCs) can thrive there. The UAE provides a corporate structure that meets your demands, whether you’re a group of investors looking for development and scalability or a lone entrepreneur wanting total control.

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