Businesses with more than one owner should have a buy/sell agreement in place.
This is a legal contract that spells out the transition that will happen if a current owner leaves the practice and also how a new interested party may be admitted as an owner. This structuring will be important to everyone that works there and will help ensure a calm and secure transition if and when that may occur.
The agreement may be forgotten or just filed away but once a major change is expected, often this is the agreement that will determine how the changes will go forward.
If there is a current buy/sell agreement in place, it should be reviewed and updated periodically (annually is recommended) by an attorney and careful consideration should be given to changes in the market and any other special events that have happened since it was last reviewed. Many circumstances can affect a business and result in needed changes to the buy/sell agreement currently in place
These agreements are usually financially driven, affect both the owners and the business itself and contain valuation details. Agreements may also have tax consequences that will affect all owners attached to the business.
An attorney will help owners create or modify an agreement with their long-term concerns and objectives as a priority. It will also give the owners peace of mind and the security they need to make long term plans for success.