It’s not uncommon for partners and shareholders to encounter a dispute at some point during business ownership. While disagreements often involve corporate decisions regarding compensation or management, conflicts can also arise if a partner is being denied the benefits of ownership. Critically, partnership and shareholder disagreements can disrupt business operations, adversely impact profit margins, and affect the future success of the corporation. Regardless of the nature of a dispute arising in a business or corporation, our attorneys Illinois partnership and shareholder dispute attorneys can assist with litigation. We represent businesses of all sizes, and in diverse markets.
If you own an interest in a corporation, limited liability company, partnership, or other type of business entity and are facing a dispute with your co-owners, it’s crucial to resolve the matter efficiently and effectively. In many situations, a settlement can be reached before either side files a lawsuit. However, other matters can only be resolved through litigation. The experienced business attorneys at Litico Law Group understand what’s at stake when it comes to shielding your company — and will work diligently to secure a favorable outcome in your case.
Simply put, partnership disputes refer to conflicts that occur between people who own businesses together. Legally, the co-owners may be corporate shareholders, limited liability company members, or true partners. These cases are also sometimes called “business divorces.” In the event a partner is forced out of the business or is being denied the benefits of ownership, the situation may be referred to as a “freeze-out” or “squeeze-out.”
There are numerous reasons conflicts between partners and shareholders can arise — including disagreements over responsibilities, access to information, distributions, and matters related to business operations. At Litico Law Group, our Illinois Partnership and Shareholder Dispute Attorneys assist our clients with a variety of partnership disputes, such as those involving the following matters:
Our Illinois Partnership and Shareholder Dispute Attorneys know how important it is to have responsive counsel when disputes occur between partners and shareholders. With a focus on creating tailored strategies for optimal results, we work to ensure the needs of our clients are met. Sometimes, an alternative dispute resolution method such as mediation or arbitration can be used to resolve a partnership conflict without court intervention. But if litigation is the only option, our legal team is prepared to vigorously advocate in the courtroom on your behalf.
Although different statutes and case law apply depending upon the type of business entity involved, partnership and shareholder disputes are usually similar in terms of the legal process. First, it is necessary to obtain and review the company’s information — partners, limited liability company members, and shareholders in closely held corporations generally have rights to review the company's books and other corporate documents. If the information is unavailable, it can either be obtained through cooperation with the opposing party or by taking court action if necessary.
After a thorough review of the company’s information, the parties will usually negotiate a resolution before a lawsuit is filed, or use an alternative dispute resolution method to reach a settlement. Pre-litigation solutions for partnership conflicts are based on the specific facts of the case and may include a buy-out of one or more of the partner/shareholder/member’s interests in the business. A settlement might also be reached in which the parties agree to reimbursement for misappropriated funds, compensation changes, distribution of dividends, or the implementation of new policies.
If negotiation is not possible or settlement discussions fail, it may be necessary to proceed to litigation to resolve the dispute. By filing a lawsuit, the aggrieved party may ask the court to award a remedy such as an injunction, a buyout, and damages for the monetary harm suffered. In addition, shareholder oppression claims litigated pursuant to Section 12.56 of the Business Corporation Act provide a wide range of options for courts to rectify shareholder disputes, ranging from the removal of directors and officers to corporate dissolution.
Even if a lawsuit has been filed, it doesn’t mean that a case will conclude with a trial. An agreement may be reached at any time during the litigation process. At Litico Law Group, our attorneys are skilled negotiators and aggressive litigators. Applying our extensive legal knowledge and business acumen in every case, we have deep insight concerning what it takes to protect your company and its bottom line.
If a shareholder or partnership dispute threatens to disrupt your business operations, it’s imperative to have an experienced business attorney on your side to protect your corporate interests. Located in Rolling Meadows, Litico Law Group serves the legal needs of small businesses and corporate owners in Illinois. No matter how complex your legal matter might be, we are committed to helping you achieve a positive outcome. We welcome you to contact us or give us a call at 847-307-5942 to schedule a consultation to learn how we can assist you.
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