Business partnerships are a lot like marriages when they are successful. Similarly, they can be spectacularly ugly when the partnership falls apart. Assuming that all attempts by the partners to find a fair and equitable solution on their own were unsuccessful, it is a good idea to work with a business law attorney that under who understands the rights and obligations of the other party as well as their client. It ensures that the split is fair, with all disputes addressed.
Use a smart exit strategy
It is tempting to walk away from the business or expel the partner by any means necessary, but it is better to have a prudent exit strategy. This can stipulate that the conditions outlined in the original business agreement are met, or perhaps a partner can tender an offer to buy out the other partner. If the partners dissolve the business, specific state statutes may apply as well.
Guard against misbehavior
A smart exit strategy avoids actions that can adversely impact the business, reducing its value or even effectively destroying the company. Potential problems include:
- The partner poaches customers as they prepare to leave or afterward.
- The partner steals assets.
- The partner seeks to nullify goodwill within the community.
- The partner attempts to damage the reputation of the business.
Legal action may be necessary
Rather than take matters in one’s own hands, it is better to find an attorney willing to file an injunction or temporary restraining order. It may also be necessary to litigate the matter to get a fair and reasoned outcome. It can take time, but sometimes the additional time, stress and expense is the only way to protect one’s business interests properly.