Business Matters

Whether you are an individual or an entity, doing business today requires thoughtful legal representation from a qualified business attorney. Legal issues arise from the formation stage and continue throughout the life of the business. Consequently, I devote much of my practice to representing business for the following types of services:

* The formation stage when the business is just starting;
* Compliance issues when the business is up and running;
* Negotiating or making deals, including drafting or reviewing crucial contract terms;
* Negotiating and documenting buy/sell agreements among owners or with third parties;
* Planning and negotiating the close or dissolution of a business; and
* Representing clients in business-related lawsuits.

At the formation stage, choices must be made as to the “who” and “how” of business ownership. Will the business be a sole proprietorship, general partnership, limited partnership, limited liability company (“LLC”), limited liability partnership (“LLP”), C or S corporation, professional corporation, etc.? The benefits and negatives of these choices requires consideration of: (1) which entity choices can shield its owner(s) from liability; and (2) what sort of local, state and federal tax implications may flow from that entity choice. In assisting clients with these crucial decisions, I draw on years of experience to collaborate with them to make the best possible ownership structure choices. I then draft the necessary paperwork and agreements to make that ownership decision a reality.

For businesses that are going concerns, I frequently assist clients with ensuring that they are in compliance with existing laws. More importantly, I employ years of experience in negotiating deals to help my business clients succeed in finalizing deals with advantageous and well-thought-out terms. For me, this involves more than just being a draftsman. Rather, it includes the crucial work of having important conversations with the other parties and their counsel to make sure that a deal happens.

Because my practice seems to be equally balanced between transactional and litigation matters, and because of my experience with litigation, I am particularly mindful of the pitfalls that can occur if the deal is not negotiated and documented properly. So my goal with transactional matters (i.e., negotiating, making and documenting the deal) is to structure those deals to have the strongest possible chances of going smoothly, successfully and profitably without later litigation. This means that agreements I negotiate and draft are not just fill-in-the-blank forms. They are carefully thought out documents designed to meet my clients’ particular needs.

Finally, when disputes arise – and they do – I am there as the attorney who tries to reach a beneficial settlement (or other resolution) if possible. And, the reality is that most cases in California (and outside of California) settle before they ever get to trial. Still, for those cases that must go to trial (or to arbitration), I also have the civil litigation experience and stamina required to proceed with a lawsuit from beginning to end. For more on that, please see Civil Litigation.

Please do not hesitate to contact me to set up a complimentary initial consultation.