I'm in the process of creating a startup. Right now it's just a series of apps in the iTunes app store but there's a ton more I want to do with it. The apps were made available for sale almost 3 months ago and have remained consistently towards the top of the paid travel apps section. I'm making good money, not a ton but it's not trivial either and sales do seem to be growing.
My first question is about forming a company for tax purposes. I have not formed a company yet and right now I would like all money that the apps make to be assets of the company when it does get formed. Is it already too late to transfer current earnings since the apps are in my name and linked to my personal accounts (iTunes and banking) or can I transfer previous earnings to the new company? Do I need to form the company and transfer assets before the end of the year for this years earnings or can I wait until after the holiday season? Do I need to get professional consulting on what type of corp to form or is this an easy decision to make based on my situation?
What about an accountant, I should probably have one of those already, right? And what about legal counsel? I could easily have 6 figure revenue for next year and want to make sure I cover all my bases. I have some legal questions about what I've done already and questions concerning plans I have for the future.
I'm local to San Francisco and would like to keep all my dealings locally if possible, I'm just not sure what to focus on or where to start (besides further development on my product!). I had applied to YC hoping all these questions could be answered and worked on during this current winter session but didn't get an interview, sorry, you guys are my second choice!
I am not a lawyer or an accountant, just someone who has slogged through this stuff before :]
You can form a corporation anytime you like, whether it be in the early stage, or very late stage. This stage is fine for starting a corporation or LLC.
For tax purposes, you can do a transaction that lets you put all of the assets into the corporation or LLC tax free but you will likely need professional help for this as the transaction is not easy. Once this is done for tax purposes, the corporation or LLC can own all of the IP, cash, and other assets, and you can hold the stock/membership interest in that corporation.
Once this process is set up, unless you are creating a member-managed LLC, you will need an accountant to help file quarterly payroll tax returns for you as an officer of the corporation/LLC.