Like many firms, we too are commercial litigators. But we are also more than just commercial litigators--we focus on business divorce. Just like no two businesses are the same, no two business divorces are the same, and it takes a trained professional business divorce attorney to handle this special breed of commercial litigation.
The two fields do share some similarities, that may help you know whether you need a business divorce lawyer.
First, does the shareholder sense something is not quite right. Sometimes it's your subtle realization that your money has been locked up in a non-performing company that won't give you information, let alone distributions or employment.
Sometimes the feeling hits you like a ton of bricks--when you've discovered a trusted partner has abused your good nature by stealing money, or customers, or trade secrets.
Given that business divorce cases often involve friends, the actual founders of the entities, or perhaps their children after the death of the founder(s), they tend to involve a greater sense of personal pride in the enterprise, and, the disputes involve a greater degree of personal animosity and rancor than disputes relating to public entities. Unlike the famous quote from The Godfather, these disputes are “personal, not business.” The business divorce practitioner must be aware of such dynamics in order to represent the client efficiently because they may be more important to achieving a resolution than a simple analysis of the bottom line. The attorney must also be open to acting as an amateur psychologist in these types of cases by encouraging the client to focus on the big picture rather than personal animosities.
Rancor or not, these cases can be cost sensitive, and the practitioner must take care to avoid destroying the value of the entity with legal costs.
When a close corporation's ownership decides to resolve that nagging sense, or outright shock, it's time to call a law firm that focuses on these special situations.