Deland, FL asked in Business Law and Civil Litigation for Ohio

Q: Private Company Stock Ownership Dispute

My Dad had ownership in a private company and he passed away about a year ago. His brother is claiming he bought my Dad's shares out 15 years ago. My Dad did sell part of this shares (about 30% of his shares were sold) to him about 15 years, but not all of them. My Dad never got a copy of the sales agreement and my Uncle refuses to provide us the sales contract for the shares. We have bank records of the amount my uncle paid 15 years ago, and it would be easy for us to prove that the amount paid was only worth 25% of what my Dad's shares were worth --the company just holds some raw land, so it is easy to trace the value. For years, the company never produced any income, so my Dad dod not had income from it. Also, my Dad had clear evidence of the shares he held from the inventory of his Father's estate -- it clearly showed the shares were assigned to my Dad.

The overarching question I have is on how we could try to prove my Dad still had ownership in the shares.

1 Lawyer Answer
Bruce Martin Broyles
Bruce Martin Broyles
  • Lancaster, OH
  • Licensed in Ohio

A: In Ohio, the Estate would have an interest in the Company, and the Estate would file a complaint to determine the ownership interest of the Estate. The Company would have ledgers of the stock transfers or the sale of membership units. There would be articles of incorporation or organization and by-laws. Most of which were probably never closely followed after the were created. But there should be a record of the ownership from the beginning to the present.

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