January 20, 2007 7:25 AM Subscribe
How do I deal with a business partnership dissolution that is rapidly getting incredibly ugly? (Both emotionally and legally.)
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Two years ago, I bought 20% of a business (corp) from the then-only owner. Over the past six months, her behavior to me and the employees became increasingly erratic and verbally abusive. I chose to end the partnership, consistent with the terms of our contract, which states that she must repurchase my shares.
Because I felt that it might smooth the process, and I wanted to encourage her to pay me via a lump-sum rather than over the 10 years allowd by the contract, I asked her to make me an offer.
Well, her offer just came through and it's for less than half of what I originally paid. Moreover, her offer includes veiled accusations of financial malfeasance on my part, and veiled threats. All of this is complete crap, which I can substantiate. She's also alleged that I reduced the value of the company (despite the fact that an independent appraiser disagreed).
I hate this woman. I am burning with anger. I want to make her life as difficult as possible, legally of course. On the other hand, I realize for my personal sake, I would be better off behaving professionally and letting my representative (family attorney, unfortunately not licensed in my state but well able to negotiate on my behalf and help me avoid litigation) negotiate with hers.
In the meantime, though, I supposedly have a week and a half more of work, wrapping up projects and ensuring a smooth transition. I am not going to be able to be in the same room with this person, let alone work with her, primarily because she impugned my ethics-- I already knew she was greedy and a bitch.
What do I do? If she's going to end up giving me nothing (or virtually nothing), why should I make this transition smooth? On the other hand, I would like to receive my last paycheck. And, how do I get out of this without having a nervous breakdown? I can't sleep (been up since 4), eat, or relax.
Help! I realize there are a couple of issues here-- the legal partnership issues are being dealt with, I think, but I am concerned about slander as well, if she tells people these lies about me it could significantly damage me. I feel like I am being blackmailed, to be honest. (Note the numbers here are fairly small, in the 10-30k range, so litigation is really to be avoided.)
But...what do I do? How do I deal?