Why You Need a Shareholders Agreement

In Show 051- Fast Fix Monday Why You Need a Shareholders Agreement originally broadcast on Facebook Live on Monday 15 January 2018 we explore this interesting topic.

Show Notes

Today on Fast Fix Monday we wanted to touch on shareholder agreements.  These agreements often come into play during Phase 6: Maximizing your business and bringing on investors.  Why do you need a shareholders agreement?  They can provide legal security for your company and it helps to regulate future disputes.  There are several “what if” scenarios this agreement will cover.  Among them are:

  1. What happens if the business owners leaves, dies or becomes chronically ill?

The owner of the business is usually the life-blood of the operation.  If they become sick or incapacitated in some way that can cause major problems.  There needs to be a transition plan in place which can include a buy-sell -option agreement.  That is essentially an insurance policy that is put in place if the owner becomes sick or dies.

  1. What happens if the founder starts another project similar to your business?

This is important because it protects the company from unfair competition from one of the people in the ownership group who may want to leave the company and enter a similar sector.

  1. What happens if you need another partner?

If the business continues to expand you may need additional investment from another partner. Before that happens the details of how that will happen needs to be worked out with the current ownership group.

  1. What if a partner isn’t putting in the time?

It’s possible that someone in the ownership group will become distracted by another job or interest and is no longer putting in the time and effort into the company.  The responsibilities of everyone involved in the company need to be clearly spelled-out.

  1. What happens if there are disagreements among shareholders?

Just like a marriage everyone gets along great at the start of a new business.  That isn’t always where it ends up.  A dispute management system needs to have been agreed upon by all parties long before the operation gets under way.

  1. What happens if there is a deadlock after a vote?

This is especially important if there is a 50/50 ownership split.  It’s possible that a major decision will end in a deadlock.  You don’t want to wait until that happens before you decide on how to resolve that kind of dispute.

More about this Show

We started Business Legal Lifecycle to create a simple way for you to understand complex legal terms.  Most importantly we want to help you to develop a plan to take your business successfully into the future.  There’s a startling statistic the underscores the importance of developing a solid plan.  The majority of business owners are just seven months away from losing everything.  A single aspect of your business that is not set-up correctly can shut down your whole operation very quickly.   Legal advice is not cheap and even when you can afford it there is often a divide between lawyers and their clients.  We want to close that gap once and for all.  We want to put legal knowledge and tools into your hand to prevent the worst from happening to you.

Twice a week we are going to deliver those tools right to your home or office with Business Legal Lifecycle TV.  We’ll start the week with Fast Fix Monday, a short 5-10 minute video that will tackle a single issue that businesses have to deal with.  Then on Wednesday’s our main show will feature with more fulsome discussions and interviews all delivered in a straightforward and easy to understand format.