Atlanta Partnership Lawyer
It may seem a bit cliché to compare a legal partnership for a business or firm to a marriage, but it’s an apt comparison and in many ways, the State of Georgia views partnerships in the same way. There are many legal rights and limitations to a legal business partnership that are not always easily undone. However, no matter how seriously you take the decision to partner with another person, or to take on a new partner, mistakes are often made. As litigation attorneys in Atlanta, our lawyers are frequently contacted to intercede in partnership disputes.
The story is typically the same. One of the partners becomes less enthusiastic about his or her duties and responsibilities to the partnership. They’ve asked the other partner or partners to cover their work as they pursue other endeavors, take vacations, or otherwise occupy themselves. Other than being unfair, it hinders the expansion of business as the remaining partner or partners have to work at a fuller capacity to make up the work of the errant partner. Eventually, the arrangement is a partnership in name only with the dedicated partners doing all of the work, but sharing their profits with those who don’t. Seeing the writing on the wall, the remaining partner or partners often seek legal protection for their interests.
In a partnership, each party owes a fiduciary duty to the other with regard to all aspects of running the business. The State of Georgia takes this relationship very seriously. A partner is compelled to consider the partnership’s interests with regard to all business decisions above his or her own individual concerns. This is a very high standard of care that can quickly be breached by business partners who get greedy or apathetic.
In addition to the profits, all partners share the debts and liabilities incurred by the business. Having a less than dedicated partner can quickly ruin the financial viability of the business venture.
It is recommended that you speak to a Georgia partnership dispute attorney first before deciding how to handle your partnership issues. In Georgia, if the business itself is at stake, you can take legal action against your partner to protect the enterprise and your personal investment.