Many businesses benefit from having multiple owners, as this can provide different perspectives, ideas, and multiple points of view about operations and growth. However, when more than one person is involved in the leadership of a company and opinions differ, disputes are nearly inevitable. While you can take steps to prevent disputes whenever possible, they are bound to arise at some point, and the important thing is how you address the dispute to minimize the impact on your business.
Even if the State of Ohio does not require you to file an operating agreement, it is important for each company with multiple owners to have one in place. An operating agreement sets out the rights and responsibilities of each owner, and reviewing the agreement can often help to resolve a dispute. If not, the agreement should direct owners on how dispute resolution should occur. If you do not have an operating agreement carefully drafted by a business lawyer, you might have to resolve the dispute in accordance with default business laws in Ohio.
If owners cannot reach a resolution on their own regarding a particular dispute, it can be beneficial to have the assistance of an experienced business lawyer. Our lawyers regularly work with owners who are facing disagreements, and our goal is to resolve the matter in the most efficient way possible, and with as little disruption to your business as possible.
First, we can review any agreements in place, as well as Ohio law, and advise you on possible compromises that can lead to a successful resolution. If informal discussion and negotiation do not work, we can represent you during alternative dispute resolution (ADR) proceedings. In fact, many operating agreements require participation in ADR to resolve owner disputes, including either mediation or arbitration.
If litigation is necessary, our team consists of experienced commercial litigators who strive to protect your rights in court while minimizing the resources expended during the process. Whether you need to enforce an agreement, seek damages from a partner, or oust an owner, we can help you resolve the matter through litigation when necessary. We are skilled negotiators who will seek a favorable settlement agreement throughout the process. We can also represent you if your case goes to trial.
When an owner dispute arises, it is always preferable to reach a compromise in-house and without formal legal action. Our attorneys can help advise on possible solutions, and can continue our representation should the matter escalate to ADR or litigation.
There is no question that owner disputes can be costly for businesses when they are not properly handled. At the law firm of Niekamp, Weisensell, Mutersbaugh & Mastrantonio, LLP, we help our corporate clients with all types of dispute resolution, including owner disputes. To learn more about how our legal team can assist you, contact us for a consultation today.
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