Business Divorce

Like marital partners, business partners have disagreements, which, if not resolved, may lead them to a divorce of their mutual business interests. We are well equipped to assist clients from the inception of disagreements, through negotiation and, if necessary, through corporate severance. If negotiation is unsuccessful, we will vigorously litigate until the business divorce is complete.

Our Business Divorce Group is lead by Rob Royal. For over thirty years Rob has handled business divorce, corporate severance and related corporate disputes and litigation. He has authored or co-authored Arizona laws on these subjects (Arizona Corporate Statutes 10-101 et al), is working to rewrite limited liability company laws and has written or lectured on business divorce topics with frequency. Rob is the most recognized lawyer in Arizona in the business divorce area. Rob has been active with various bar associations, including serving as chairman for business and corporate litigation groups. He is the litigation editor of the Arizona Corporate Practice Guide, the leading West publication for business and corporate dispute resolution and litigation in Arizona.

Rob is backed by several associates and paralegals, and his legal assistant of over twenty-five years, Marsha Brott.

Business divorce encompasses claims of director liability and officer liability (D&O liability); manager liability in limited liability companies (LLC’s); shareholder disputes and shareholder litigation. Arizona laws covering such topics as statutory standards of conduct for officers and directors, shareholder derivative actions, indemnification, corporate dissolution or buy out, and conflict of interest transactions are commonly involved. Management’s fiduciary duties are present in every case, including their duty of care and duty of loyalty. Common abuses of duties include misappropriation or using corporate assets for their personal gain, and when a person or faction takes advantage of another (oppression of shareholders or partners) person or faction within the company. Additional claims often seen are interference with contracts or future business expectancy, unfair competition, employment claims and some type of breach of contract claim. A unique defense to these claims is the business judgment rule, which operates to give managers of the company some protection if the manager acted with good and reasonable business judgment when facing corporate or even individual claims of liability.

Whether called corporate divorce, corporate severance, company breakup, business breakup or company divorce it all still means Arizona business divorce. Rob is also available for mediation, to assist business partners in their break up, to mediate a resolution of their differences, and provides expert witness services.

Rob is also the author of the Arizona Directors, Officers and LLC Managers Handbook, a unique resource tool which compiles state and federal laws and cases to assist Directors, Officers, and LLC Managers with understanding and discharging their duties and obligations to the Corporation, the LLC and the owners.

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