Business Structure Advice

Stevensen Business Lawyers provides legal advice to help clients choose the best business structure for them in starting a business, growing business or restructuring a business. Our services include setting up a company arrangement or preparing a partnership agreement, consist with your accountant’s advice on a tax-effective business structure for your startup business, or existing enterprise. If you do not have an accountant that you believe can assist you in this process, we can refer you to someone from our network.

Setting up a Partnership Business Structure or Company for your Startup or Growing Business

The types of business structures we can help setup, adapt or update include:

  • a Sole-Trader,
  • a Partnership Agreement between individuals,
  • a Partnership Agreement between two companies,
  • a Joint Venture Agreement for a joint venture between a number of companies,
  • a Shareholders Agreement and Company Constitution for running a Company,
  • a Unit-Holders Agreement for a Unit Trust.

We can set up the small business entity or business structure for our clients, including by drafting and finalising all the contracts and other documents involved in implementing business structure advice. We can also negotiate on your behalf with the other parties.

We can arrange an update to your company setup or lodge a new company registration with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), together with our third-party provider.

We also create, negotiate and finalise all transaction contracts involved such as:

  • Share Transfer Agreement between shareholders,
  • Share Transfer Agreement between an existing shareholder and a new shareholder,
  • Deed of Accession for new shareholders to become party to a Shareholders’ Agreement,
  • Managing Director Employment Agreement.

If some else has supplied you with any of the above documents, we can advise you on updates and draft those updates.

Updating your existing Partnership Agreement or Shareholders Agreement

Where you already have an ‘off the shelf’ or ‘free template partnership’ or ‘simple general partnership agreement’ or ‘basic shareholders agreement’, we can still help. Our services include updating and customising such ‘off the shelf documents’ according to your changed business plan.

With our years of experience both as contract lawyers and as dispute resolution lawyers, we know for a client it generally costs less to have these documents checked and customised by your business lawyer, compared to the legal fees that can be involved in a dispute between business partners or shareholders in company with a partnership agreement document or shareholders agreement document which is unclear or does not reflect the real business deal, from your perspective.

Do you have a signed Partnership Agreement or a signed Shareholders’ Agreement? Has your situation changed over time or your business grown? Are you thinking of restructuring your business?

Do you have a new investor for your company or partnership business?

Are you thinking of ways to facilitate capital injection into your growing business by investors? Is your business legal structure ready and capable of attracting potential purchasers of shares your company, or a loan from a startup investor?

Our business contract lawyer service includes legal advice on updates required to your Partnership Agreement or updates required to your Shareholders Agreement, or your Company’s Constitution, in line with your changed business plans, and drafting those updates, for a Fixed Price Fee. (To receive a free quote, simply use the contact form above, or call us).

Financing your business startup

We can also prepare documents tailored to accommodate private funding of your startup company by an investor, and negotiate on your behalf throughout the transaction. We can also assist by reviewing and advising you on the contract documents supplied by a seed investor or an early-stage investor into your business or product.

Many small business owners self-fund their business. But for others there comes a point when ‘bootstrapping’ is not enough to implement your business plan for sale of goods or services or to widely distribute your product. So, how can a business lawyer help you in this journey? Sourcing funds from others to finance or invest in your business can be structured and documented in a number of ways, with various types of contract or agreement used. They include:

  • Early Stage Innovation Company to maximise tax breaks in the early stages for your innovative business;
  • Convertible Notes Agreement for a financier to be entitled to receive shares in the company if the loan monies are not paid back by the company by the due date;
  • Loan Agreement with monies advanced to the company by a Director or someone else, with the company’s repayment obligations secured by the assets of the company including intellectual property rights;
  • Security Agreement for the lender to secure repayment of a loan by a charge over assets for recording on the Personal Property Securities Register, also known as the PPSR;
  • Revenue Financing where the lender provides the borrower with a secured or unsecured loan in return for the lender being entitled to receive royalty on goods sold by the borrower;
  • Crowd-Sourced Funding for new company structures;
  • Employee Share Plans for employees receiving the incentive of shares in the company, usually non-voting shares;
  • Share Subscription Agreement for issuing new shares to an existing shareholder or to a new shareholder or silent investor;
  • Limited Partnership Agreement for a fixed amount to be advanced by a silent partner in the business.

Business Structure Advice

We believe our business structure advice offers true value-for-money for our clients, and stands the test of time compared to ‘off the shelf’ products. Our services are tailored to the needs of our clients, consistent with your business plan, and is not an ‘one-size fits all’ approach.

We can work closely with you accountant or financial advisor so that their advice on your taxation position is factored into how the business is structured.

For further information on how Stevensen Business Lawyers can assist set up, change or update the legal structure of your business, including a consultation on the types of business entities which may be suitable, please contact us today.

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