The statistics are worrying. When family businesses are passed onto the 2nd generation they will ultimately fail 70% of the time. Only 12% will still be around for the 3rd generation. But when you stop and think about it, the number of business and family related issues that can have a detrimental impact a family business are immense. Thankfully, solutions to most challenges that will confront the business can be agreed in advance by family members and put in place in the form of a family business shareholders agreement. After all, doesn't it make sense to agree how the business will be run when things are running smoothly instead of waiting for a conflict to arise? Shareholder agreements can prevent many of the predictable but inevitable changes in family and business dynamics from having a negative impact on the business and provide an agreed mechanism for resolving disputes fairly when they do arise. Our presenter for this session is Business Group partner Lawrence Silber. He will outline the essential elements of a shareholders' agreement for a family business that will help the business survive and thrive in the short and long term. Also in the presentation, Lawrence will share examples of how the shareholders' agreement can be created to meet the unique needs and preferences of any family business. Topics covered will include: 1. Defining roles and responsibilities within the company 2. Planned succession of the business from one generation to the next 3. Mandatory mediation and exit procedure agreements when conflicts arise 4. Avoiding conflict between family members active in the business and non-active family shareholders 5. Restrictions on transferring shares 6. Rules for selling the business by one shareholder or by all family members 7. How to handle the death or disability of a shareholder 8. How to handle marital breakdowns within the family business 9. Agreements on how the business will be funded
For the owners of small and growing businesses, the area of employment law can be a constantly changing minefield. Understanding and complying with your obligations as an employer will help you alleviate these threats and let you focus on the running of your business.