Q: My informal business partner is not pulling his weight and I'd like to take the product and move on without him.
I wanted to start a company with an associate of mine a few years ago. We agreed on how we would structure the company and what our roles would be. I would develop the product and he would handle business and sales operations.
Without the company being formalized, I created the product with his (or his associates) occassional guidance. However he became very unresponsive, usually taking weeks or months to get back to me.
Over time (3 years), the product has sat dormant and I continue to express my concerns, but he still has not moved the product forward in any meaningful way and simply delivers empty promises. He has also not created the company or our shareholders agreement as he said he would.
I would like to move forward with the product without him.
Should I tell him or just move on? Should I have concerns about him trying to claim a part of the business later? What can I do today to minimize risk?
A: You may have formed a general partnership. A partnership is a business form created automatically when two or more persons engage in a business enterprise for profit. I would have him signed documents stating that no partnership was formed and disclaiming any rights to the product.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.