If your Minnesota company is structured as a partnership, it means that you’ll have to coexist with at least one other owner. From time to time, even partners who have great working relationships will run into disagreements. Fortunately, there are many steps that you can take to resolve a dispute without necessarily ruining the relationship that you have with your partner.
Have an informal conversation
In some cases, a conversation is all that is needed to overcome a disagreement. For instance, you might hold a quick meeting to clarify the terms of a new contract or to explain why you added or dropped a client without consulting your partner first. These conversations can be held with or without advisers present. However, keeping a record of what was said in case a solution cannot be reached may be a good idea.
Take the matter to mediation or arbitration
Mediation means that you have decided to involve an unbiased party tasked with facilitating a conversation. Having a neutral party present may prevent unnecessary conflict. Arbitration is like litigation, except that the process is more streamlined. In addition, the arbiter’s ruling is final, meaning you can’t appeal it or take any other action.
Dissolve the company
Resolving partner disputes may only be possible with a court order or by taking drastic action outside of court. For example, you may sell your equity stake to your partner or let the company go under. A judge may also order that the company be dissolved.
Issues with a partner may put the stability of your company at risk. Therefore, settling a dispute as quickly as possible is generally preferable even if it means conceding money or control to your partner to promote unity and peace moving forward.