News & Analysis as of

Family Businesses

Future Proofing Boards of Directors for Family Businesses

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

Michael Eisner, former CEO of Walt Disney, said it best that “management is not a science, it is an art.” But, not all art stands the test of time—and the composition of the board, and the way the directors manage a family...more

Laying the Foundation for Success: Structuring the Board of Directors in a Family-Owned Business

The board sets the overall strategy and policies of the company, so your corporate governance foundation starts with structuring the board of directors. As the overall governing body, the board elects the officers of the...more

Should You Mediate Your Family-Owned Business Dispute?

by Murtha Cullina on

Disputes between and among owners of family-owned businesses are sometimes unavoidable. When such disputes progress to litigation, they can be extremely costly, time-consuming, and disruptive for the business and its owners....more

What “Arrested Development” Teaches The Family Business

The award-winning TV sitcom Arrested Development, now in re-runs on Netflix, was premised on the rise (and mostly fall) of an American family business, the Bluth Company, owned by a comically dysfunctional family. Engaged...more

Succession Lessons from The Crown

Leadership transition from parent to child in a family-owned business is challenging. I noted a few factors in the successful, though difficult, transition portrayed in The Crown that may be helpful in your own “kingdom.”...more

Mom Let You Grow up to be a Cowhand, Now What? – Legacy Planning in Agricultural Industries

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

A typical family-run ranch or farm may look like this: grandparents still own and collect rent on the majority of land, parents serve as CEOs, and the third generation works the land as general managers while raising the...more

Selling a Family Business

With a wave of baby boomer business owners thinking about retirement, selling a business can allow founders to keep the company running while converting their ownership into funds for their future. Many times, owners have...more

And the Award For Most Oppressive Conduct By a Majority Shareholder Goes to . . .

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

Over the years I’ve litigated and observed countless cases of alleged oppression of minority shareholders by the majority. Oppression can take endlessly different forms, some more crude than others in their execution, some...more

Retirement is Coming: How to Broker Your Throne Away

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

We’ve all heard the chatter (or read about it in this blog). The owners of family businesses need to start thinking about their exit strategy. To put it in perspective, Robert Nason of John Molson School of Business reveals...more

Family Business Interests, Charitable Remainder Trusts and Life Insurance: Q & A with Capital Strategies Group

Bradley’s Family Owned Business team asked our friends at Capital Strategies Group, Inc. to share a case illustrating how high-net-worth families involved in family businesses are using life insurance in creative ways that go...more

Definitions in Shareholder Agreements Matter When Transferring Family-Owned Business Stock

by Murtha Cullina on

Owners of family-owned corporations often enter into shareholder agreements that spell out whether and to whom corporate shares can be transferred. Frequently, these agreements provide for rights of first refusal by the other...more

Insight on Estate Planning - August/September 2017

In This Issue: - An uncertain tax climate: An estate tax repeal might result in negative tax consequences for some families - A 529 plan can benefit your estate plan - Would a spendthrift trust help achieve your...more

Do You Have a Reasonable Expectation of Receiving Dividends if You Acquired Your Shares in a Family-Owned Corporation Through Gift...

by Murtha Cullina on

Corporate shareholders often expect to receive dividends in connection with their ownership of corporate shares. This is particularly true when owners invest capital in or provide other services to the company in exchange for...more

Jones Presents at NCBA Estate Planning and Probate Section Annual Meeting

by Moore & Van Allen PLLC on

Charlotte Wealth and Estate Planning Member Chris Jones spoke at the North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA) Estate Planning and Probate Section Annual Meeting in Kiawah Island, SC on July 28. The presentation titled,...more

Beyond Succession; Opening a Discourse About Inheritance

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

Recently we published a post in our blog about succession and the steps necessary to see it through. Having an open, honest, and transparent discourse with family members is one such step. Yet, this is often more easily said...more

Court Shifts Costs of Forensic Computer Exam to Plaintiff for Not Preserving Emails

by Zapproved LLC on

Estate of Shaw v. Marcus, Nos. 14 Civ. 3849 (NSR) (JCM), 14 Civ. 5653 (NSR) (JCM), 2017 WL 825317 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 1, 2017). In this complex dispute over a family business, the court redressed the plaintiff’s former...more

Important changes proposed for the taxation of Canadian private corporations

by DLA Piper on

On July 18, 2017, the Canadian federal Finance Minister, Bill Morneau, announced the release of a consultation paper and draft legislation which, if enacted, will have a dramatic impact on the taxation of Canadian private...more

What Family Businesses Should Know about Washington’s New Paid Family Medical Leave Law

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

On July 5, 2017, Washington State joined a handful of states mandating paid family and medical leave. The new leave program, to be funded by employer and employee premiums, will provide up to 18 weeks of paid leave to...more

Tribal Estate Planning: Nuance and Consequence

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

Simple estate planning is pretty straightforward. There is usually a Last Will and Testament, Power of Attorney, Health Care Directive, and Trust if necessary. But there is a niche practice within estate planning ripe with...more

Will Your Family-Owned LLC Be Required to Pay the Fair Value of a Withdrawing Member’s Interest?

by Murtha Cullina on

Family-owned businesses that are organized as limited liability companies typically reflect the terms of the company’s governance, along with the members’ financial rights and obligations, in a written operating agreement....more

Treasury Dept. Identifies 8 "Significant Tax Regulations" for Review to Reduce Burden

by Holland & Knight LLP on

The U.S. Department of the Treasury announced on July 7, 2017, in Notice 2017-38 (the Notice) that it has identified as "significant tax regulations" eight sets of U.S. federal tax regulations that were issued between Jan. 1,...more

Family Business – The Key to Surviving Generations

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

Every article, paper, memo, or advisory about family business succession touches on some common themes. Plan early. Communicate well. Document the process. Gauge the true interest and ability of the next generation. A few...more

Best in Law: It's a Family Affair! How to Avoid the Pitfalls - Six Legal Tips to Running a Family Business

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

Many successful businesses are family-owned. There is an unmatched pride that comes from building a business that has the capability of being passed down through generations. Yet, a family business faces unique challenges....more

Appraisers’ Valuations Are Light-Years Apart, But Does That Make Them Hired Guns?

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

The title of this post notwithstanding, the judge’s decision in the recent, high-stakes stock valuation case I’m about to describe, featuring a clash of business appraiser titans whose conclusions of value differed by almost...more

Unreasonable Compensation & The Family Business

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

“Add-Backs”- In the course of valuing a target business, a potential buyer will want to develop an accurate picture of the target’s earnings and cash flow. In doing so, the buyer will try to normalize those earnings by...more

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