Although it still does not appear that any charges have been filed out of the Feds raid on National A-1 offices a couple of weeks ago, that event does take me back to the basics, back to the time I practiced law.
When I used to practice law and a client with an existing business came into my office with a new idea for a new business, one of the first things I would tell them is to seriously consider starting that new business in a separate entity, be it a corporation or LLC.
The problem with operating several businesses under the same entity is if one runs into problems, be they legal, financial or otherwise, all other business in that same entity can be effected, the assets of the non-problematic business can be affected or lost.
In the case of National A-1 it seems that the same company owned, in addition to a lot of domains, operating business(es) as well including HotMovies.com which is an adult site, serving up adult content.
Mr. Berryhill and attorney who I greatly respect commented on another post on TheDomains.com about National A-1:
“”What surprises me is how many different unrelated lines of business A-1 has consolidated under one roof.”
“If you are have one business that sells discount fuzzy puppies to children, and you have another business that sells bongs and rolling papers, then you might want to think about whether you want to do those two things as one business operating in one facility.”
John brings up a good point, besides operating different businesses under different entities there are other issues to be concerned with including sharing office space, employees and servers.
So the issue is more complicated that it would appear and the answer maybe more complex than just having separate corporations owning separate businesses, while it is imperative that you get your own legal advice.
I have no details about how National A-1 organized their business, but it seemed when the raid occurred many domains, adult and non-adult went offline.
I see a lot of domains owned by National A-1 the same company that is listed as the registrant for HotMovies.com.
Although Escorts.com, a site that some news stories say was the subject of the raid on National A-1 is not registered to them, the business seems to operate out of the same building as National A-1 and resides on National A-1 servers.
The point is if your going to operate mulitple businesses, )not just serving up landing pages), you need to consult with an attorney and organize your affairs in a way that protects one business from the liabilities of another.
We of course hope everything works out well for National A-1 but the bigger picture, it that if your running multiple businesses you need get good legal advice on how to organize your affairs.