Under a sole proprietorship business can I be sued personally?

I am planning to start a book Rrntal service . I’m planing on registering as a sole propertiership. I need to know If I could be sued if there is any problem with the service I am providing?  For example, a delay in renting out books ? Under a sole propertiership, I have found: not a separate legal entity; owners have unlimited liability; cannot sue or be sued in its own name; cannot own property.

Asked on July 24, 2010 under Business Law, Alabama

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

A sole proprietorship is not a legal entity. It refers to you as the person who owns the company and who is personally responsible for its debts.  You sign your name as an individual on all legal documents. If someone did sue the business then they would sue you personally as well.  This may not be the best way for you to operate the business.  You should really seek help from an attorney in the are that specializes in these types of matters or seek help from the Small Business Association in your area.  Someone needs to asses your personal situation: what you own, what needs to be protected, etc.  It can not be done in this forum.  Good luck.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.