Tools for carrying out your business and estate plans
Choosing the right business entity is not enough. To ensure that a business will meet the owner’s long-term goals, it needs to be set up and continued with care for its lifespan. Operating agreements and annual maintenance are two areas require special attention.
Unlike most other states, New York requires LLC members to adopt a written operating agreement. Operating agreements play an important role in the life of an LLC. They dictate the relationship among the members and determine what happens to the business if an owner leaves or comes into the business. This will not take the place of a will or other estate planning tools, but it should complement them. After the death of an owner, the operating agreement can guide operations during the weeks or months that the estate is pending.
Businesses that operate as a partnership must have a well-structured partnership agreement rather than an operating agreement. A partnership agreement serves the same purposes as an operating agreement and offers the same flexibility.
Annual maintenance typically includes conducting meetings, preparing minutes and resolutions, and documenting activity to confirm that your business is still in compliance with relevant statutes. Corporations and LLCs are required to hold annual meetings of owners. This is also a good time to review all of the business’s controlling corporate documents, as well as everyday operations. Any major decisions affecting your company should be authorized in writing, as potential lenders or buyers may want to see authentication. It’s a good idea to review operating agreements and bylaws every few years and make sure they are compliant with current laws. If new owners have entered the business, this should be financially and legally documented.
Business Formation and Succession Attorney
A business entity might sound good on paper, it may but not be the best choice in a real situation. Consulting a business and corporate lawyer with in-depth experience can help you put in place a corporate and estate planning structure that allows for your business’s immediate operations as well as for business succession.
The estate planning and business attorneys at Pierro, Connor & Strauss, LLC offer a full range of business planning and estate planning services, including:
- Advising on business structure and drafting formation documents
- Contracts, Leases, etc.
- Serving as General Counsel
- Preparing minutes, resolutions and conducting annual meetings
- Buy-Sell Planning
- Mergers and Acquisitions
- Reviewing and constructions exit plans
Call us today to schedule an appointment to discuss your needs.
Pierro, Connor & Strauss, LLC provides legal services to clients in ten locations that include the Capital Region, New York City, Long Island, Westchester, Hudson, Utica, Lake Placid, Fort Lee, NJ, Falmouth, MA, and Clearwater, FL.