Ater Wynne lawyers understand that families who own businesses are different from other businesses and different from other families. The difference is in the frequency and urgency of the decisions demanded by the business and the consequences of those decisions on the relationship between family members. This is a delicate balance that requires great sensitivity and skill on the part of the professionals advising these family-owned businesses. We have that sensitivity and skill at Ater Wynne.
Our lawyers and staff work in a supportive way with our family business clients from start-ups to mature businesses looking at transferring the business to the next generation and beyond. Our lawyers are experienced in the strategies of such transfers and much more.
Transferring ownership is only one component of succession planning. For succession to be successful, transfer of the knowledge gained by the older generation to the next generation must occur alongside the moral authority to lead. This may require assessing the abilities of the next generation to lead or finding an interim CEO with the skill to manage the business until the successor is prepared and ready to lead.
What of the other family members? Our attorneys understand there is a role for other family members to play in the life of the business through an advisory council to the board of directors or attending annual meetings of the family to learn more about the business. Our attorneys are skilled in working with family businesses to institute best practices learned from a quarter century of research and learning in this field. They are ready to share what they know with Ater Wynne’s family-owned business clients.
There is more to advising family-owned business than assisting them in succession planning. The day to day operation of a family-owned business takes the same sensitivity and skill sets on the part of the lawyers advising these businesses. The lawyers at Ater Wynne have that sensitivity and the skills to advise family-owned business about how to govern and manage the business successfully; about how to compete in the market place; about dealings with employees; about transaction business abroad; about the taxation of the business; about environmental issues; and much, much more. At Ater Wynne we are able to provide the range of legal services family businesses need to meet the challenges of a family business in these business and economic times of globalization and economic uncertainty. At the same time, our lawyers are sensitive to the unique challenges presented by family businesses.