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Shoffner & Associates provides a wonderful thing for Boston. That is —
Excellent legal representation.
After ten years of owning and operating her own company, Freya Shoffner gave up her search for a good lawyer for her small business and her family. She went to law school with the goal of building a law firm that could take care of a small business’ every legal need. She also wanted that firm to give all types of families the best representation possible.
Shoffner & Associates advises small start-up businesses in business planning, entity selection, and other formation issues. They help their established business clients with business litigation, tax, trademark and copyright advice, and they provide outstanding support in succession planning, estate planning, business transfers and sales, and dissolution.
Now, more than ever, your company and your family need the help of experienced lawyers who know how to get the job done the right way — the first time.
HOW WE CAN HELP
If you are going to succeed by building your ideal business, you must know where you are starting, where you want to be, and how you will get there. To do that, you need a clear, well-defined, guide.
That guide is your business plan.
The business plan defines how you will operate, your marketing strategies, the nature of your competition, and your financial structure. A well-constructed business plan dramatically increases your odds of succeeding.
In short, the business plan shows where your company starts, where it is going, and how it will get there. A good business plan will show you that starting your own company is the right thing to do – or not
Inc? LLC? What’s Right for Me?
Selecting the right business entity for your start-up or small business is one of the most important decisions you will make during the life of your business.
When the attorneys at Shoffner & Associates help you select your business entity, we make sure that your choice will help ensure your success.
According to Ted Turner, “Life is a game. Money is how we keep score.” Game or not, every new business needs money to get started, and making the right financing decisions is critical to business success. Most businesses begin with the owner’s capital or loans from friends and family. Some are successful in obtaining bank financing or using a government sponsored loan program. The lawyers at Shoffner & Associates know how to help you and your new business choose the right way to get the best financial start.
Every business needs two professionals from the start to the finish: an accountant and a lawyer.
The reasons for hiring an accountant are pretty obvious–you need someone to help you set up your “chart of accounts,” review your numbers periodically, and prepare all your necessary federal, state and local tax returns.
But most small-business owners figure that they only need a lawyer if they’re in trouble. That’s a big, bad mistake.
If you’ve been sued, it’s too late. The lawyers at Shoffner & Associates provide vital support to our clients in almost every aspect of their businesses, from basic zoning and license compliance, to copyright and trademark advice, to lawsuits and liability. Get to know us and how we can help your business succeed.
Contracts are as vital to a business as the Red Sox are to Boston. A bad contract can stop your business – cold. Knowing your rights and obligations under a contract, as well as knowing what to do in case of a breach, are essential for protecting your interests.
We help our clients with every aspect of contracts: drafting, review, revision, and negotiation. We have decades of experience drafting and evaluating any type of contract that your business requires.
Contact a contract attorney at Shoffner & Associates. Our lawyers’ mastery of contract law will help keep your company running successfully.
No matter what kind of litigation your business faces, effective resolution requires focused, competent, practical, and cost-effective legal representation. The attorneys at Shoffner & Associates have the right combination of legal know-how and business expertise to achieve the best results.
So many of our business-owner clients build their exit strategy around selling their business to an independent third party. They think that they’ll obtain more cash from a third party and that the sale will be less risky. Often, they are completely wrong.
Third Party Sales Can Be Risky.
Of course, if you can get your price from an outsider and payment in full in cash at the closing, and if you have no time to make a carefully structured sale to an insider, then the third-party sale is the less-risky choice.
Many Companies Aren’t Appropriate For All-Cash Sales.
To be a good candidate for an all-cash sale, your company must:
have more than $1 million (or even $2 million) in EBITDA;
be in an attractive market sector;
have strong fundamentals; and
enjoy a unique competitive advantage.
Otherwise, you just aren’t a likely candidate for a sale to a third party, and it won’t be reasonable to expect cash.
It Can Be Hard To Find a Third-Party Buyer.
Every sale requires a buyer. We’re in the middle of a tough time for business, so unless your company is in an attractive market sector, such as power, alternative energy, health care, medical services, or healthy-living products, prospective buyers will be in short supply. These days if you are in the business of construction, retail, real estate, automotive, or consumer products you may well find it impossible to attract an outside buyer.
The Longer Your Wait, The Riskier It Gets.
What will you do if:
A qualified buyer doesn’t show up?
What happens if,
your industry niche has fallen out of favor; or
your sales drop off; or
the economy is in decline or worse?
A Carefully Structured Insider Sale Puts You In Control
Choose your buyer;
Name your price;
Control ownership until you are paid in full; and ,
Shift the responsibility for performance to someone else.
Do Take Time To Plan
Selling your business to someone inside the business takes some work, some time and careful planning. Although insiders may not have the ready cash right now, you can still sell profitably when:
your company has a good management team;
your company has good cash flow; and,
you allow plenty of time before leaving to make your exit plan work.
Work With Experts
The best exit strategies are implemented with the help of a knowledgeable attorney and an informed accountant. As soon as you start your business, you should be planning your successful exit. Let Shoffner & Associates show you how to do it right.
Whether your business is a sole proprietorship, an LLC, or a partnership, creditors often require the business owners to guarantee their debts personally and that can put your home and personal assets at risk.
At Shoffner & Associates, we have decades of experience working with business owners to fix these difficult situations. We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.
Our attorneys will analyze the structure of your business and your finances to determine the best course of action. Depending on your situation, you may be able to keep the equipment you need and use cash as collateral to continue to operate your business and reorganize your debts.
Buy-sell agreements go by many other names –stock (or share) repurchase agreements or redemption agreements, cross-purchase agreements, purchase and sale agreements, blind buy-sells, or shotgun agreements. When it comes right down to it, there are only two kinds of buy-sell agreements: the kind that is drawn up at the right time and the one that is drawn up too late. Most businesses begin drawing up a buy-sell agreement when it is too late.
When a buy-sell agreement is drawn when it is too late, some dramatic, emotional event has taken place: a deadlock between owners, death of an owner, exclusion of an owner from the business, or worse. All of these events result in great stress for the parties, and transactions are often motivated by threats of litigation. When litigation between owners erupts, more often than not, it is settled by a buy-sell agreement. The expense of litigation is almost always many multiples the cost of an agreement that is drawn up when the parties are amicable. So smart business owners skip the expense, anguish, and uncertainty and have a buy-sell agreement in place before it is needed.
What is the best buy-sell agreement to have? That’s an easy question to answer. There is no best form of agreement; there is only what’s best for you. And that requires a careful consideration of the circumstances of the business and the owners.
Schedule a Consultation
The best buy-sell agreement for you is the one that is built to match your circumstances and address your objectives. The lawyers at Shoffner & Associates welcome the opportunity to help you. Contact us to discuss your business’s goals.