Business transactions are wide and varied. They can be as simple as a business contract to sell a certain product or service for a specific price, or one as complex as an on-going agreement that may involve business licensing, or the sale of an entire business. An agreement can be one page or in excess of 100 pages. Usually the complexity of the business transaction dictates the complexity of the document. The days of the handshake are, unfortunately, a thing of the past. The best advice is to get everything in writing during any business transactions.
The purchase and sale of a business is a complex transaction. This usually involves the sale of the assets or of the shares of stock of a business corporation or units of membership of a limited liability company. Sometimes it involves more esoteric business transactions which involve other entities, such as net operating loss formations. The tax consequences of each variety of sale must be closely analyzed by your certified public accountant and corporate business transaction attorney. If either of these individuals or firms are not versed in these intricate transactions, ask them to refer you to counsel who will work with your current advisors as a team to obtain your preferred result.
Throughout the course of your business transactions, you will encounter numerous situations where you should seek counsel and advice, whether it be legal, financial or otherwise. You will have to live with every business agreement you make. Make sure you know what the agreement says and that you can live with that agreement.
Most businesses enter into contractual relationships daily, weekly or monthly. They may involve the purchase of materials and services or the sale of products or services. They may involve leases, distribution agreements, complex construction agreements or marketing arrangements. You must understand exactly what you agree to in each business transaction agreement and make sure any agreement you propose is fair and enforceable.
Attorneys Practicing in Business Transactions: Ronald W. Greenen