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Family Business

Family business disputes often exhibit a high level of conflict, which can result in challenging business, personal and relationship issues. These disputes often have the quality of a divorce. In family held enterprises, possibly those where the second generation has taken over the day-to- day operation and/or control, there may be ongoing resentments and inequalities of contribution that result in family business conflict. In addition, balancing the transfer of wealth between the active participants and the family members who are stakeholders but not working in the business can cause great conflict and resentment.

Managing family business conflicts in a family business is an ongoing and difficult task. While a family business can be of great benefit to members of a family, it often suffers from conflict in aims, goals, participation, and contribution, resulting in damage to the business and to family relationships. Mediation is an effective method to provide family business conflict resolution in order to help family members, both active and passive participants in the business, come to terms about goals, structure, control, and money issues. Mediators can help in family business succession planning, selling the family business, divorce and the family business, address conflicts in closely held businesses and partnerships.