If I have a single member llc and i am the owner of the entity and the entity is not profitable. Should i still pay wages and issue a W2 to my self to protect against piercing. Can i just have a due to account on the books for accrued compensation to show that i will eventually get paid by the entity.


Answer

Before I can answer your question, I need to ask you a few:

If the entity is not profitable, how are you funding your paychecks?

Are you borrowing money from a bank or other lender?

Are you lending your own money to the llc and taking back a note?

Are you accruing expenses to outside vendors but not paying them, and instead paying yourself?

If you pay yourself “W2” wages (as opposed to taking a draw from your llc’s profits), remember that the llc must withhold payroll taxes, pay its share of payroll taxes, and make quarterly deposits of the same.

Comments
Good follow up questions, but you did not provide answers….
What is the implication if you loan personal start-up funds to your LLC and then it is not profitable? I would assume your “pay” is just a loan repayment. Should you charge your LLC interest, at a reasonable rate, so you will actually make some money from your LLC?

I would assume at some point the LLC makes money, but what is the implication if you need an additional loan to keep the LLC running? Can you keep loaning personal money to the LLC while simultaneously withdrawing loan payments (with interest) back to yourself?

Answer

Extending a loan is not a taxable event for either party.

Repayment of loans are not taxable either (for either party).

So your LLC can keep taking losses while making payments on old loans, and you can extend additional loans as well.

Be sure to create a paper trail in the form of promissory notes for the loans, and identify the payments as loan repayments (make up a payment schedule as well). Charge a reasonable rate of interest.

If the LLC is losing money, a tax deduction from the loss will flow through to the owners. This is regardless of whether the LLC has money in the bank due to additional loans.

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