Traditional Business Divorce Approach
Think of a marriage break-down where an angry spouse hires a lawyer to take an aggressive or extreme position and threatens court proceedings. Feelings are badly hurt, positions quickly harden, relationships deteriorate and dueling lawyers wrestle to control the process.
Once the matter goes to court, it becomes public which in turn serves to ratchet up the bad feelings and harden the positions even further. The only winners are the professionals charging the hefty fees.
The situation is the same with a business divorce which typically takes years fighting in court with all the attendant costs and complications dealing with separate sets of lawyers, accountants, valuators and other advisors, and all the attendant negative energy and publicity a court process entails.
In high net worth situations, total professional fees when litigation is involved are typically 7 figures.
The Equitas Approach
Instead of the parties “lawyering up” at the outset, there is one lawyer, one valuator and one tax advisor acting together as a mediation team in a private setting designed to “ratchet down” the emotions at a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the time.
It is the equivalent of separating spouses agreeing to hire a mediator from the start of the process. Rather than lawyers being hired at the outset to ramp things up when emotions are running high, they are hired towards the end of the process to provide independent legal advice on a recommended settlement.
In high net worth situations, total professional fees when mediation is involved are typically 6 figures. Other significant benefits include containing the “airing of dirty laundry”, minimizing the distractions and disruptions to the business and increasing the chances of restoring family relations over time.