If you are considering starting a new business, or restructuring an ongoing one, we will advise you on the best corporate structure to use based on an assessment of tax issues and potential liability. Options include establishing your company as the following:
- Limited liability company (LLC)
- Sole proprietorship
Shareholder Agreements are useful tools that can be used to effectuate corporate governance with more flexibility and increased privacy than relying on the constitutional documents of the business entity. As the name suggests, these agreements are among a corporation’s shareholders and will govern the rights and responsibilities of the shareholders and how the company will be run. As is it a private law contract, it is not open to public inspection as generally are constitutional documents.
It is likely the case that your business will have to enter into contracts with various people and entities, whether they are for goods or services from vendors, for real estate purchase or lease, for employment or severance or any number of other reasons. It is important that you have a professional work with you to craft an agreement that accomplishes your goals and protects your interests.
In the purchase or sale of a business or business assets, attention to detail is crucial. The attorneys at ATR have facilitated hundreds of business acquisitions, including those involving real estate, and bring a wealth of experience to each unique deal. The attorneys of ATR draw on the experience of the firm’s litigation experience in business matters, which allows the attorneys working on the purchase or sale of a business to see beyond just the here and now to address all current and future aspects of a transaction. There are many aspects to the purchase of a business, and it is important to ensure a buyer is actually acquiring everything he or she intends to acquire. The attorneys at ATR have been involved in both small and large purchases and sales of businesses, such as landscaping services provider and medical/dental practices, to a small, local technology company to a multi-million dollar nationwide entity and numerous hospitality properties up and down the Maine coast and inland.
If you are considering the purchase or sale of a business, call the attorneys at ATR. We are available to assist from planning and entity formation, to drafting of the asset purchase agreement and assisting with due diligence, to facilitating a smooth closing and transition of the assets, and finally with post-closing matters as they arise. Ensure your investment, whether being put into a new business or capitalizing on the time and energy expended in building your current one, is protected by consulting with the attorneys of ATR today.
It is always important to make sure that your business is acting legally. In terms of licensing, this means that your business is current with, and has all required certificates permits and licenses as may apply. The process for acquiring and being approved for licenses can be confusing. Our attorneys are well-versed in dealing with regulatory bodies and know how to make sure your business will continue to operate in compliance.
Employment matters is a broad category that can encompass many legal issues. Whether your business is hiring employees on the front end, and needs employment contracts or, conversely, your business is thinking of terminating employees and chooses to use severance agreements, professional advice will serve your business well by ensuring applicable laws are followed and agreements are fair. Should you have a claim filed against you with the Maine Human Rights Commission, call us for professional advice.
Broadly speaking, Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) are terms that are used when more than one business decides to either join together to form a new company (merger), or one company buys and/or takes over another company (acquisition). Acquisition of a target business can be either by a Stock Purchase or an Asset Purchase. The type of purchase the acquiring business wants to undertake will depend on a variety of factors that should be discussed with an experienced business attorney in order to maximize the value of the purchase and protect the acquiring business from potential liabilities down the road. Mergers generally require the creation of a new entity formed by the merging companies. Likewise, Maine has its own merger statute which must be complied with if a merger is to be legally effectuated, requiring a variety of intricate legal technicalities to be followed.
Should your business be looking to either sell or transfer its assets, our business attorneys are available to ensure your business is justly compensated for its value, and that your business is not unknowingly left on the hook for any outstanding liabilities.
In Maine, many companies are owned by individuals or only a small number of people. When one or more owners retire or otherwise leave the company, there needs to be a plan both for compensating that person for his/her contributions and for the continuance of the company. Transfer of ownership not only affects the day-to-day operation of a closely held company but can also have significant tax and transfer implications that need to be adequately planned for in order to keep operations running smoothly and minimize the expenses of change.
Dissolution occurs when a business has run its course and for one reason or another, the owner (or owners) needs to terminate the company.
Litigation of any kind is stressful on a client, and even more so when the litigation affects the client’s business and livelihood. At ATR, our attorneys understand and respect the time, funds and effort you have put into building, growing and maintaining your business, and want to help you protect that investment. Our attorneys have extensive experience in navigating the litigation process surrounding business disputes related to everything from breach of contract claims, employment issues, disputes over employment agreements and non-compete clauses, to lease and landlord tenant issues and construction law matters. Whether you have a claim against another party or you and/or your business is being sued, you can rest assured the attorneys of ATR are ready to assist you from inception of a lawsuit to judgment, and even in enforcing your judgment and ensuring you receive what you are owed. Business owners know they can rely on the expertise and skill of the ATR attorneys to secure and to protect their business interests.
The vast majority of companies in Maine are small businesses, businesses that, despite having relatively few employees, face a broad range of legal issues. At Ainsworth, Thelin & Raftice, P.A., we represent over 500 small businesses and offer a full range of services to help them establish and grow.
Business Services & Corporate Law Team
Attorney Raftice has worked with business clients for more than 25 years. In addition to helping getting their business off the ground, Bob has assisted with litigation, financial restructuring, succession planning and with the sale of their business.
Attorney Gamache’s real estate practice has given him a depth of knowledge in establishing LLCs to own property as well as the issues they may run into after they are established. He has become a trusted advisor to his business clients.
Attorney Vaillancourt offers the total range of services to his business clients; from buying or setting up the entity to obtaining licenses, handling labor and/or zoning issues, representing them in any litigation and assisting them when it comes to business sale or succession.
Attorney Turcotte has a varied business clientele ranging from landlords with both single and multiple properties, retail business, professional service entities, contractors and tradesmen. Over the years, he has handled issues for all of those varied businesses from startup to litigation.
Attorney Bowie is building a solid base of business clients working with the knowledge and experience of the veterans in the firm. He recently completed a complicated sale transaction for a business client.
Attorney Piasecki is building a solid base of business clients working with the knowledge and experience of the veterans in the firm. His prior business experience working at a Massachusetts start-up information technology firm and his business development background at Idexx has given him a unique perspective that relates to the clients just starting out in business. He also had his own LLC to hold a rental property, another personal experience that he brings to his business clients.
Business owners in Southern Maine rely on the skill and professionalism of the attorneys at Ainsworth, Thelin & Raftice, P.A. To find out how we can help you, call us at 207-767-4824, or complete our contact form.