STRATEGIC ADVOCACY FOR BUSINESS DISPUTES – TORONTO BUSINESS LITIGATION LAWYERS
Toronto Family Business Dispute Lawyers
Lawyers for Family Business Litigation in Ontario
Many businesses in Canada are family businesses or have evolved from family businesses. Family businesses present many unique challenges as they grow, as key members of the company or partnership leave the family business, or when personal relationships of the key members of the family business change or deteriorate.
Sometimes the loss of a stabilizing senior member from the family business, caused by death or retirement, may be a catalyst for long standing hostilities to surface within the operation of the family business.
Changes in a family business and the challenges presented by change can often result in legal disputes between interested parties. Family business disputes are often be protracted, expensive, and disruptive, and may even result in the sale, division or winding up of the family business.
Roles of Family Members in Family Businesses
Disputes often arise even when a family business succeeds or grows, since those family member involved at the earlier stages may re-assess their positions in light of the success and seek to capitalize on their early involvement.
Majority, minority, or equal family members often find themselves in disputes with each other in a way which may wrongfully obstruct the operations and growth of the family business, or which wrongfully seeks to “squeeze out” or oppress opposing interests, requiring prompt and agile legal response.
Family Business Disputes – Examples
We can assist in providing prompt and cost-effective advice relating to:
Impact of Separation and Divorce on Family Businesses
Complex questions arise in the division of property and assets when dealing with a family business during a separation or divorce. The value of the family business is included in the equalization of net family property. If there is no pre-existing shareholder agreement, this further complicates the division of property.
Tough decisions need to be made about the continued management and control of the family business after separation and divorce, including whether the spouses choose continued joint management, a buy-out by one spouse or the dissolution of the business.
Why Choose Gilbertson Davis LLP?
Gilbertson Davis LLP has lawyers that have experience dealing with business disputes for companies of all sizes, including, family businesses, start-ups and closely held corporations. A lawyer at Gilbertson Davis LLP was a member of the faculty for the Osgoode Professional development program Shareholder Litigation and the Closely-Held Company (held on April 7, 2015)
It is important to obtain prompt and effective legal representation, before these issues become significant, since these disputes may dramatically impact the stability of the family business while they remain outstanding.
Delay may also impact upon the nature and extent of urgent court ordered remedies available which concern obtaining and preserving records and evidence, preserving or maintaining the status quo of control (or otherwise), and the freezing of assets of the family business and access to them in appropriate circumstances.
If you operate or are involved in a family business, or are a shareholder, director, officer, partner, or employee of a family business with a legal dispute, contact us for an initial consultation.