We have extensive experience with all of the legal aspects of a private business – including the formation of the business and, if disputes arise, in the resolution of conflicts.

We represent both majority and minority owners of private companies.  When we assist on the front end of structuring a business, including the negotiation of agreements among owners, we help ensure that our client's interests are protected and goals can be achieved.  When conflicts or disputes arise out of ownership interests in privately-held business entities, our lawyers understand how to navigate the complex issues to help maximize our clients’ objectives.

Structuring a Business Entity

The ultimate success of a business is heavily influenced by the governing documents and agreements that the owners enter into governing their relationship with each other as it relates to the business. There are many factors that should be taken into consideration when making the decision, such as taxes, liability, and operational control.  Our team regularly works with individuals, families, and business partners to structure private business entities such that they address potential conflicts and protect owner’s interests.  We also assist businesses that are already intact to strengthen existing agreements.  We have particular experience with the following:

  • Entity and management structure
  • Operating agreements/articulating economic arrangements
  • Exit strategy
  • Succession plans
  • Executive compensation
  • Restructuring strategies
  • Confidentiality agreements
  • IP ownership, including trademark

Conflict Resolution

In situations where conflict arises and business owners need to resolve a dispute, we have experience throughout Texas working with clients on both mediation and litigation related to a wide range of private company disputes.  We understand the dynamic of family and closely-held businesses are delicate. For family and closely-held businesses, litigation is not always the best option. By exploring all options, our attorneys seek to reach efficient, effective, and creative resolutions that do not jeopardize the long term plans of the business. Our experience includes resolving issues related to the following:

  • Partnership formation and dissolution
  • Minority stakeholder disputes
  • Director liability and officer liability (D&O liability)
  • Manager liability in limited liability companies (LLCs)
  • Shareholder disputes and shareholder litigation
  • Embezzlement
  • Trade secrets
  • Division of assets
  • Buyouts


  • Horan v. SignAd, Ltd., et al; C.A. No. 2013-74857; In the 80th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas – Representing closely-held limited partnerships and LLCs in lawsuit brought by minority-interest owner for dissolution, appointment of receiver, books and records, and breaches of fiduciary duty.
  • Johnston v. Martin; C.A. No. 2014-51054; In the 55th Judicial District Court, Harris County, Texas – Representing 50-percent shareholder in lawsuit brought by other shareholder for appointment of receiver and breaches of fiduciary duty.