Shareholder disputes often arise out of complex business issues and stakeholders need an experienced legal professional representing them. At Brown & Charbonneau, LLP, our Irvine shareholder dispute lawyers have the legal knowledge and business backgrounds necessary to provide top-notch legal representation.
Do you have a dispute with your shareholders that needs to be addressed? Having the right legal representation is key to resolving shareholder disputes promptly, which is why you need an Orange County shareholder dispute attorney. With extensive knowledge of corporate law, skilled negotiation skills, and experience successfully representing clients in contentious shareholder settings, a qualified attorney can provide invaluable guidance and help tremendously in obtaining a favorable outcome. Learn more about how an experienced shareholder dispute lawyer can help address your situation.
Irvine Attorneys Represent You in Shareholder Disputes
Shareholder and other business disputes may arise for a variety of different reasons including disagreements on actions majority shareholders take; actions by one or more shareholders to terminate the relationship; or allegations of fraud or illegal behavior made by minority shareholders.
Regardless of the cause of the dispute, it is important to be represented by a legal professional with both a business and finance background who can understand the issues and provide you with advice on your options. Brown & Charbonneau, LLP attorneys not only have corporate legal experience but we are also business owners with advanced knowledge of the ins-and-outs of shareholder disputes. For example, can an owner who is an officer and director resign and start a competing company?
Our Irvine attorneys can represent clients on a variety of different issues that cause disagreements among shareholders. Our attorneys can bring their expertise to the table to assist with:
- Shareholder derivative actions.
- Business sales, mergers and acquisitions.
- Fraud and concealment.
- Temporary restraining orders, injunctions and receivers
- Breach of fiduciary duty claims
- General Counsel and consulting services
- Business enterprise valuations, valuations of physical assets/equipment and real estate.
- Forensic investigations in cases of fraudulent transactions or misappropriation.
- Digital forensics to facilitate the discovery of questionable activities.
- Diversion of corporate revenues, funding personal expenses through corporate accounts.
- Analyzing buy/sell agreements including a thorough financial assessment.
- Quantification of marketability discounts.
- Succession planning issues.
- Corporate reorganizations and joint ventures.
- Debt and equity restructuring.
- Owner incompetence claims and/or elder abuse.
- Licensing, distributorships and other agreements.
These are just some of the services that we can offer to clients involved in a shareholder dispute.
Overview of what a Shareholder Dispute Attorney does
Shareholder dispute attorney helps corporations resolve conflicts that arise among shareholders and between shareholders and the corporation. They provide legal advice and counsel to clients regarding disputes related to stock ownership, voting rights, management decisions, corporate structure, and other areas of corporate governance.
An experienced shareholder dispute attorney can help protect shareholders’ rights against unfair practices by other owners, such as those which may lead to financial losses or mismanagement of assets. In many cases, a shareholder dispute lawyer can negotiate settlements to avoid costly business litigation and save time for all involved parties.
Shareholder dispute attorneys understand that each corporation is unique, and requires customized solutions based on its stakeholders’ particular needs and goals. They have extensive experience in finding creative solutions to complicated shareholder disputes and can also provide invaluable assistance in helping shareholders negotiate with one another.
Tips to Consider When Selecting a Shareholder Dispute Attorney
Look for a shareholder dispute attorney who has experience in shareholder disputes, and can demonstrate a proven track record of success in prior cases.
Make sure you select an attorney who is well versed in California corporate law and is familiar with any applicable statutes relevant to your case. Ask about their understanding of specific aspects such as fiduciary duties, securities regulations, and other areas related to corporate governance.
Ask the attorney to assess your case and provide a reasonable estimate on the time needed to complete it. This can help you avoid any surprises or delays in the process.
Ensure that your shareholder dispute attorney is highly communicative and willing to keep you up-to-date throughout the process. Ask if they are available for face-to-face meetings, phone calls, emails, and other forms of communication that suit your needs.
Legal Challenges Faced During a Shareholder Dispute
Shareholder disputes can be emotionally charged and legally complex, but they are resolved daily through negotiation and litigation. In this article, we will discuss some common legal challenges in a shareholder dispute.
One such challenge is determining who has standing to bring a claim. Shareholders may have standing to bring a direct action if the conduct of corporate officers, directors, or other shareholders harm them directly. If, however, the corporation itself is the party that is harmed, shareholders do not have standing to bring a direct action. Instead, a shareholder must make a demand to the corporation’s Board of Directors that the corporation initiate a legal action. If the Board decides not to act on such demand, a shareholder can then file a “derivative action”. A derivative action is a lawsuit filed by a shareholder for the benefit of the corporation. While the shareholder is the party actually prosecuting the case, the corporation is the real Plaintiff that will receive the benefit of a favorable outcome.
Another potential challenge involves fiduciary duties owed by certain parties involved in the dispute. Fiduciaries, such as directors or officers of the corporation, owe a duty of care and loyalty to the corporation. If fiduciaries breach their obligations by engaging in self-dealing or other wrongful acts, the affected shareholders may have grounds for either a direct or derivative action.
Issues of control can also complicate theshareholder dispute process. A company might have multiple classes of shares that give different voting rights or ownership stakes. If one group of shareholders attempts to exercise disproportionate control over the company, minority shareholders might challenge this action as improper and seek an equitable remedy.
Strategies for Successful Resolution of a Shareholder Dispute
1. Utilize Mediation or Arbitration:
In some cases, it may be helpful to engage an independent mediator to resolve the dispute. Doing so before initiating legal action can provide the opportunity to resolve a shareholder dispute before significant litigation costs are incurred. If litigation is necessary, shareholders may also wish to consider pursuing arbitration rather than a traditional civil case. Arbitration proceedings are typically more streamlined, and can help in the parties reaching a quicker resolution. Additionally, a corporation’s bylaws often contain an “arbitration provision” that requires arbitration in lieu of a traditional lawsuit.
2. Consider Compromise:
Disputes are often resolved through compromise and negotiation between the parties. By considering options that could meet both of their needs,shareholders are more likely to find a mutually agreeable solution.
3. Utilize Expert Witnesses When Appropriate:
In some shareholder disputes, the issues to be litigated are complex, and will require expert review and analysis. These issues can include complex financial transactions, business and stock valuations, and similar items. In such cases, early retention of a qualified expert witness can be highly beneficial. Understanding the issues early on in the case can help you craft discovery, strategize, and be more effective in settlement and trial.
4. Consider Litigation:
Sometimes litigation is necessary to resolve a shareholder dispute. In such a case, it is important to consult with an experienced shareholder dispute attorney to understand the potential risks and benefits of litigation, and the potential merits of your case. It’s important to consider this option early on and determine if it is the most appropriate course of action before getting too far into negotiations.
5. Document Everything:
When issues among shareholders start to arise, it is beneficial to , document everything discussed and agreed upon between the parties involved. This will provide a clear record of the conduct at issue, which will be beneficial if the dispute ends up in litigation.
6. Stay Open-Minded:
Even if one party believes their solution is the only satisfactory resolution for the dispute, it’s essential to remain open-minded throughout the process. Far more often than not, settlement of legal disputes requires compromise from all parties involved.
Benefits of Retaining the Services of a Qualified Orange County Shareholder Dispute Attorney
Retaining the services of a qualified Orange County shareholder dispute attorney is beneficial for those involved in a shareholder dispute.
A professional business litigation attorney can help you formulate and present your case in the best possible manner to maximize the likelihood of success. Additionally, an experienced lawyer can provide essential legal advice about any potential implications or consequences arising from taking particular courses of action.
Furthermore, they will have knowledge and experience working within local court systems and laws, which can aid in navigating complex legal proceedings. Finally, having a qualified legal representative adds weight to your position when negotiating settlements or other resolutions outside of court.
As such, consulting with an experienced Irvine shareholder dispute attorney is advisable before proceeding with any course of action. Seeking the advice of a qualified professional is essential for ensuring that your rights and interests are protected throughout the course of the dispute.
Working with an experienced Irvine shareholder dispute attorney can be invaluable in helping you to reach a healthy resolution to your dispute. They will be familiar with the laws and regulations about shareholders in California and offer guidance and support every step of the way. At Brown & Charbonneau, LLP, our team of knowledgeable attorneys are always available to answer any questions you may have about shareholder disputes and provide advice tailored to your specific situation.
How Our Irvine Shareholder Disputes Attorneys Can Help
Resolving shareholder disputes involves assessing the legal and financial issues and outlining a strategic approach to protect your investment and interests. Brown & Charbonneau, LLP will tailor our representation to your specific case, keeping the big picture in mind. The goal is an effective and affordable resolution of the dispute that achieves the most favorable outcome for clients as well as preserving the value of the business.
From understanding legal approaches to assessing risks, our legal experience and business background will prove invaluable in assisting in the resolution of disputes among shareholders. Often, preserving relationships among owners is important and our attorneys are prepared to take a cooperative approach to facilitate an amicable resolution. If the dispute must be resolved through litigation, arbitration or mediation, our attorneys are here and ready to help you make the strongest case possible.
Our Irvine shareholder dispute lawyers represent majority owners; minority owners and 50 percent owners in large and small corporations and closely-held companies. Call today or contact us online to speak with a member of our legal team and learn more about the assistance we can provide.