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Partnerships do not always go as smoothly as hoped

Posted by William J. Cook | Jul 02, 2018 | 0 Comments

Going into business with a partner may have felt like a wise decision at the time of your company's creation. Certainly, partnerships can offer a great number of benefits to individuals wanting to collectively move forward with a business venture. Of course, what may start out as a seemingly smooth arrangement could face issues over time.

Partnership disputes are not uncommon. In some cases, individuals may disagree on certain points but come to agreements soon enough. However, you may face more serious issues with your partner or partners that do not get resolved so easily. As a result, you, like many other business owners, may end up facing litigation.

Family and friend issues

A considerable number of reasons exist for problems between business partners. Some of those reasons may not even relate to business. For instance, if you created your partnership with your spouse, other family member or even a close friend, the potential exists that an out-of-work issue could bleed over into work life. This means that if you or your spouse or friend do not have the ability to keep work and personal life issues separate, the company could suffer. You could also face issues if you and your spouse divorce.

Common issues with any partner

Even if you chose to partner with another business professional or someone else with whom you have limited social or personal interaction outside the office, issues could still easily come about. Some problems that may arise within partnerships include the following:

  • Different goals and values: If you and your partner are not on the same page as far as where you want the company to go, you could end up having clashing opinions later on.
  • Unequal commitment: You may have entered into the partnership with the idea that each of the partners had an equal stake in and commitment to the company. However, disputes could arise if you feel willing to make necessary financial contributions and other partners do not.
  • Personality issues: One reason you may have considered partnering with a friend or family member is because you knew you got along on a personal level. If you chose an outside party to partner with, you may later find out that your personalities are too different to form a cooperative and cohesive partnership.
  • Success issues: Businesses struggle, and even when companies go through good times, they can also face setbacks. If all partners do not have the fortitude to work through the downs as well as celebrate the highs, a lack of immediate success could have a partner wanting out.

Resolving partnership disputes is not always easy, and when partners do not agree on big issues, litigation may stand as the only option for effectively coming to a resolution. If you face such an issue, you may want to ensure that you understand your legal options.

About the Author

William J. Cook

William J. Cook represents clients in matters involving business litigation and commercial and employment disputes, securities litigation, business transactions and counseling, and insurance. Mr. Cook's peers have awarded him with the highest possible rating of AV-Preeminent* by Martindale-Hubbell, which speak...


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