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Business Shareholder Disputes in White Plains, New York

Shareholder disputes can emerge from various situations, such as disagreements over business strategy, conflicts of interest, unequal distribution of dividends, or allegations of shareholder oppression. These disputes can disrupt business operations and create a tense atmosphere within the company. That's why it's vital to address them promptly and effectively.  

At Rutkin & Wolf, PLLC, we're well-versed in the intricacies of shareholder disputes and are here to offer you the support and guidance you need. Our seasoned attorneys will work closely with you to evaluate your situation, scrutinize the applicable laws, and formulate a strategic plan to protect your shareholder rights. 

What to Do if You're Facing a Shareholder Dispute

Your first step is to compile all pertinent documents and evidence concerning the dispute. This encompasses shareholder agreements, corporate bylaws, meeting minutes, and any other relevant contracts or communications. These documents aid us in understanding the rights and obligations of each shareholder and pinpointing any potential breaches or infringements

With a comprehensive understanding of the facts and legal framework, we'll explore numerous options for resolving the dispute. Our objective is to find the most efficient and cost-effective solution that aligns with your objectives. Whether it involves negotiation, mediation, arbitration, or litigation, we'll guide you through each stage of the process and advocate for your best interests. 

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How an Attorney Can Help

Having an experienced attorney by your side is crucial when dealing with shareholder disputes. At Rutkin & Wolf, PLLC, our team of skilled attorneys possesses extensive knowledge and experience in managing complex business shareholder disputes. We're committed to providing you with the highest level of legal representation and personalized attention. 

We'll thoroughly analyze the specific circumstances of your case and provide you with a comprehensive assessment of your rights and legal options. We'll clarify the applicable laws and regulations, ensuring that you have a clear understanding of your rights as a shareholder. 

Beyond providing legal advice, we'll also act as your advocates throughout the dispute resolution process. We'll negotiate on your behalf, represent you in mediation or arbitration proceedings, and, if necessary, litigate the matter in court. Our goal is to achieve a favorable outcome that protects your rights and interests as a shareholder. 

Shareholder Rights in New York

In New York, the rights of shareholders are enshrined in the Business Corporation Law (BCL) among other statutes and case law. Shareholders must be cognizant of these rights, as they provide a means of influence and protection within the corporation.

Key shareholder rights in New York typically include: 

  • Right to Vote: Shareholders have the right to vote on significant corporate matters, such as electing the board of directors, approving major corporate changes, and amendments to the bylaws. 

  • Right to Inspect Books and Records: Upon written request for a valid purpose, shareholders are entitled to inspect and make copies of the corporation's books and records, including minutes from meetings and financial statements. 

  • Right to Dividends: When declared by the board, shareholders have the right to receive dividends from the corporation's profits, in accordance with their share class and ownership percentage. 

  • Preemptive Rights: Shareholders may have preemptive rights that allow them to purchase additional shares before the company offers them to the public, often ensuring they can maintain their proportional ownership and voting power. 

  • Right to Bring Derivative Suits: If the corporation is being harmed by the actions of its directors or executives, shareholders can sue on behalf of the company if the company fails to take appropriate action. 

  • Right to Sue for Wrongdoing: Shareholders can bring direct legal action against the corporation or its board for actions that infringe upon their rights or cause them direct harm. 

  • Appraisal Rights: If a shareholder dissents from certain corporate actions, such as mergers or consolidations, they may have the right to receive the fair value of their shares as determined by a court. 

  • Protection Against Oppression: Minority shareholders are protected against oppressive actions by the majority through various legal remedies. 

  • Shareholder Agreements: Shareholders in New York may enter into agreements that outline additional rights and obligations among them, which upon agreement, can supersede some default rules of the BCL. 

These rights are designed to protect shareholder interests and ensure that they have a stake in the governance and success of the corporation. Shareholders are encouraged to seek professional legal counsel to better understand and utilize their rights effectively in any corporate situation. 

Causes of Shareholder Disputes

Shareholder disputes can spring up for various reasons, but they often originate from shareholders feeling that their rights have been infringed upon.

Common triggers of shareholder disputes include:

  • Disagreements over the direction and management of the company.

  • Conflicts of interest among shareholders.

  • Allegations of shareholder oppression or exclusion.

  • Disputes over the distribution of profits and dividends.

  • Breaches of fiduciary duties by directors or officers. 

Options for Resolving the Dispute

When confronted with a shareholder dispute, several options are available for resolving the conflict. These options encompass negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and litigation. 

Whether it's through direct negotiation, the assistance of a neutral third party in mediation, or a more formal arbitration process, our aim is always to find the most efficient and cost-effective solution.

And if all else fails, we're prepared to litigate the matter in court, despite it being a more lengthy and costly process. 

Business Shareholder Disputes in White Plains, New York

Navigating shareholder disputes can be daunting, but you don't have to face it alone. At Rutkin & Wolf, PLLC, our experienced attorneys are ready to provide the guidance, support, and advocacy you need to protect your rights and interests as a shareholder. Don't hesitate to reach out to us today. We're here to help.