Sadly, some of our clients find that they can no longer work with or tolerate their fellow directors, partner, or shareholder. If you find yourself in this situation, you are not alone. We receive instructions from clients in all business sectors (with a significant increase in instructions from professional practices) who want to find a solution so that they can move their lives or businesses forward.
We take the time to find out what you really want to achieve. Sometimes all that is needed is assistance with negotiations which lead to one of the parties selling to the other. In other cases, there are allegations of wrongdoing which need to be investigated further so that any liability can be established, and the amount of compensation ascertained.
It is common for 50-50 owned partnerships or companies to have a decision-making deadlock and we advise on the best way forward.
We also advise on problems surrounding director’s remuneration, dividends, allegations by minority shareholders of unfair prejudice caused to them by majority shareholders, and breaches of fiduciary duty by company directors.
Understanding the current legal position is important as is knowing what the legal and practical consequences of a particular course of action may be. In some cases, the partnership agreement or, in the case of the company, its articles of association or a shareholders’ agreement or a director’s service contract will provide the answer. In many cases though the current problem you are facing has not been foreseen in the agreement or there may be no written partnership or shareholder’s agreement in force.
We use the benefit of our legal knowledge of legislation and case law and experience with past cases to advise you. The need to commence or defend court proceedings may not be far away but our clients often find that by investing in advice from us at an early stage enables direct negotiations to take place with the other party’s advisers before matters deteriorate too far. Often an out-of-court settlement is reached through direct negotiation or by mediation and we handle any resulting transaction such as sale of shares one party to the other.