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Do I Need a Lawyer When Selling a Business?

When selling a business, a business transaction lawyer is highly advised to navigate the often incredibly complex tasks. Seemingly small mistakes can bring vast amounts of unnecessary stress and expenses.

While you might think it’s excessive to hire a Florida business transaction lawyer, doing so will help you make the process much smoother and quicker.

In many cases, people will need to turn to a lawyer at a later stage to unravel mistakes made earlier.

In this blog, we’ll explain why you need a lawyer when selling a business:

Why Hire a Business Transaction Lawyer?

To Help With Decision Making

The first step in selling a business is making a decision. For example, you need to decide whether to sell the company’s assets or sell the ownership interests of the existing company.

The decision has significant legal and tax consequences. A Florida business transaction lawyer will be able to help you decide on which strategy is right for you and what is compatible with your needs.

The seller may also need to decide whether they’ll finance some or all of the purchase price. Sometimes, it may be better to pass on a buyer than agree to finance part of the purchase price.

If the financing is not repaid, the business will be taken back later and likely with decreased value. Plus the cash flow situation may be dire. However, this risk may be required to get the business sold.

Without a Florida business attorney, you may overlook crucial considerations such as these that can have a significant impact on your future.

To Get Favorable Terms

A Florida business transaction lawyer will protect your interests during every step of the process to ensure you make a sale without additional liabilities.

They will also gather details about outstanding liens while ensuring the transaction meets all existing laws.

Business lawyers also have vast professional experience and information concerning value to negotiate a more desirable revenue from the sale.

To Handle Paperwork

The paperwork involved in selling a business is intense – from quantity to complexity. Sometimes sellers hit a roadblock when they’re unable to complete all the required documents.

A Florida business transaction lawyer can take the burden of paperwork away and fill every document in as required and in your best interests.

These documents include purchase agreements, financial statements and forms, non-disclosure confidentiality agreements and inventory lists. By ensuring the sale has no missing documents or loose ends, liability can be prevented.

For Legal Counsel and Representation

When you hire a Florida business transaction lawyer, you gain strong professional legal counsel.

Our job is to ensure that you (the seller) have a clear understanding of the process from start to finish, enabling the sale to happen smoothly. We represent you on your behalf so that we can settle internal tensions before the sale and all communications with the buyer and any financial parties.

Legal counsel from a Florida business transaction lawyer can be critical in any situation that involves a court or meeting with other groups. They will represent and defend you as a seller and advise you on decisions before approving any transaction.

Considering a buyer will likely have an attorney on their side, you leave yourself at risk of being severely overpowered if you go at it alone. Our Florida business attorneys regularly handle appraisers, financial planners, accountants, insurance brokers and opposing lawyers.

Dealing With Tax Implications

When selling a business, an eye-watering tax bill can arise fast. But a Florida business transaction lawyer can help you find ways to minimize the impact of taxes.

Negotiating a Sale

Negotiations are a critical point of any sale. Without the confidence, expertise and legal standing to handle the power dynamics of negotiations, you may be exploited or pressured into a price you’re unhappy with. Whether you’re selling your entire business or some assets, our Florida business sale lawyers can help.

A Smooth Closing

When closing a business sale, the seller transfers their business over to the buyer. A Florida business transaction lawyer can prepare the pertinent paperwork to make the closing process as faultless and smooth as possible.

Efficiency From Start to Finish

Efficiency is another extremely beneficial use of a lawyer when selling a business. Communication, document preparation and information exchange become quick and streamlined, without confusion and misunderstandings. This can help the transaction close as soon as possible for the benefit of both parties.

What to Be Aware of When Selling a Business?

When selling a business, you must be aware of the following factors:

  • Ensure that as a seller, you are paid on time.
  • If seller financing is required, ensure your lawyer prepares all documents on your behalfs, such as promissory notes and security agreements.
  • Sellers must avoid making unreasonable representations or warranties in the Purchase and Sale Agreement to avoid future liability.
  • Sellers must recognize and resolve any potential issues with the business before listing it for sale.
  • A seller should consider getting an appraisal before listening to the business for sale.
  • The seller should receive expert legal advice before making any decisions.
  • Sellers should always conduct a judgment and lien search on their business to resolve issues ahead of the sale. Which can help avoid sale failure and litigation in the future.
  • Sellers should have all documentation such as annual minutes and filings up to date – especially if you’re selling a LLC or corporation.
  • Sellers must check that all business licenses are valid and satisfied.
  • By preparing documents such as tax returns, financial statements and more, the chance of a quick and smooth sale is significantly increased.

Hire a Business Transaction Lawyer in St Petersburg, FL

If you’re considering selling a business in St Petersburg, Florida, contact us today.

Our lawyers, Ross and Purdun at Battaglia, Ross, Dicus & McQuaid, P.A. have extensive experience that can help you in every step of the sale, from drafting to negotiations and closing. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

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