What To Do When Your Business Partnership Begins To Sour


Shared interests or capital requirements often lead people to work together, but this is not enough to warrant a long-term business relationship. It is necessary to learn everything possible about someone’s business history and integrity before forming a partnership. Due diligence will help you avoid these common reasons for the dissolution of many business alliances.

  • Embezzlement
  • Lack of Communication
  • Excessive Spending
  • Secretive Dealing

If you suspect your partner is sabotaging your business, these are some steps you can take.

Confirm Your Suspicions

You may not want to believe that your business partner is working against you, but you need to follow your instincts and confirm any suspicions before taking action. Look for signs from your partner that include, dismissive or secretive behavior, boastful or belittling comments, excessive or unilateral spending.

Discuss Your Concerns

Whether you have solid proof of your business partner’s wrongdoing or are generally uncomfortable with them, it may be time to discuss your concerns openly. It is in your best interest to remain calm and focused and not digress from the points you want to make. Talking it out is the first step toward knowing if your partner is thoughtless or genuinely out to get you.

Enlist a Mediator

If you think that your business relationship is not working because you don’t agree with your partner or feel undermined, it may be possible to redesign your business structure in a way that it can work. If both you and your partner agree that your partnership is worth continuing, you may want to hire a mediator who can help broker a better arrangement that works for you both.

Consider Dissolving the Partnership

Often partners don’t take enough time to explore each other’s goals or ethical standards, which can become painfully apparent when a crisis occurs. Cutting your losses may be the best option once you realize that your partnership is not what you hoped it would be.

Seek Legal Assistance

If you didn’t do your due diligence when you formed your partnership, you could still hire a business attorney to dissolve it when things turn sour. You will need to deal with many complex issues such as payment of outstanding debts, managing client expectations, and state requirements. Unless your partner has displayed criminal behavior that would warrant alerting the authorities, you will want to ensure an equitable dissolution.

Like all relationships, business partnerships require nurturing. Whether you frequently disagree with your partner or suspect criminal behavior, a business lawyer in Washington, DC, like from Brown Kiely, LLP, can help you move on.