Working closely with our clients, Stull & Associates provides a variety of services, including: 

Entity Formation

Business Planning

Contract Negotiations

Succession Planning

Corporate Governance

Shareholder and partnership agreements

Buying and Selling Businesses

Preparing and reviewing leases, releases, waivers, property agreements and similar documents

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Business Law

Stull & Associates offers legal services tailored for businesses.  Our attorneys represent individuals, farmers, investors, entrepreneurs and small businesses throughout Michigan.  Our clients include general contractors, carpet installation companies, travel agents, retail stores,  and real estate managements companies, to name a few.

Frequently Asked Questions

Entity Formation

What types of businesses are available in Michigan?

There are several forms of entities including sole proprietors, partnerships, limited liability partnerships, limited partnerships, limited liability companies, and corporations.

What is a Limited Liability Company?

A Limited Liability Company is a business entity recognized in the State of Michigan that protects its members from liability for the actions of the company and limits any financial liability to the assets of the Company.

What is a Corporation?

A Corporation is a business with a centralized management and requires officers and directors.  Corporations also protect owners from liability for actions of the corporation. 

How is a Limited Liability Company different from a Sole Proprietorship or a Limited Liability Partnership?

There are many differences between a Limited Liability Company (LLC) and a Sole Proprietorship, or Limited Liability Partnership, but the main difference is that the members of an LLC are not personally liable for the business’ debts, while a sole proprietor or partner in a limited liability partnership may be liable for the debts of the businesses.

How do I form and entity?

There are many steps to form an entity, allow Stull & Associates to guide you through this complex process. 

Business Planning

Why do I need assistance in planning for my business?

The excitement of the endeavor can overshadow the proper planning for future needs of the company.  Planning for issues such as capital contributions, unexpected expenses, expansion, and even dissolution before a problem arises can prevent a catastrophe in the future.

What is business planning?

Business planning includes financial planning, drafting organization documents, and ensuring that all proper forms and permits are completed and filed before operation begins.

Contract Negotiations

Why do I need assistance with contract negotiations?

Negotiations involving business matters should not be taken lightly.  There are many complicated issues that should be addressed before any documents are signed.  Stull and Associates has over 30 years’ experience negotiating numerous business contracts and protecting our clients’ business interest.  Having a seasoned professional like those at Stull and Associates can provide an advantage in contract negotiation.

Succession Planning

What is succession planning?

It is creating a plan within your business for when the owners or members choose to transfer their ownership interest to a third-party, generally to a key employee or child. 

Why is succession planning important?

It helps to avoid conflict when the owner or member passes away or decides to no longer participate in the management of the business.  In some instances, it can prevent a business from being involved in the probate court process.

Corporate Governance

What is corporate governance?

Corporate governance is a broad term for the system by which the rules, processes, or laws of businesses are controlled.  Corporate governance is the framework by which your business will be operated.

Why do I need assistance with corporate governance?

Having a well-defined, enforceable system of corporate governance will help your business run smoothly and effectively.  Further, an effective corporate governance system will help to ensure that your business observes ethical standards and follows the laws.  Stull and Associates can assist you in creating a well-organized corporate governance system.

Shareholder and partnership agreements

What are shareholder and partnership agreements?

A shareholder agreement or a partnership agreement is an arrangement amongst the company’s shareholders or a partnership’s partners that describes the rights and obligations of each partner or shareholder to the company or partnership. 

Why are shareholder and partnership agreements important?

Shareholder agreements and partnership agreements not only outline a shareholder or partner’s obligations to the company, they also set forth expectations of what type of profits a shareholder or partner will receive.  Shareholder agreements set guidelines for values of shares and partnership agreements describe what percentage of the company each partner owns.  This will help your company run smoothly and allow for more efficient disbursement of funds if the company dissolves.

Buying and Selling Businesses

What steps are necessary when deciding to sell a business?

There are numerous steps that a seller should take before selling a business, which include, but are not limited to ensuring the corporate governance documents are in order, ensuring the books are records are up to date, assessing the assets and liabilities of the business and valuing the business.

What should I consider before buying a business?

First you must determine whether the business is a viable and whether or not you have the resources and skills to maintain its viability.  Next you will need an independent investigation of the entity before discussing the purchase price.  This is a very simple explanation for a complex process so it is important to consult with an experienced attorney like those at Stull & Associates.

I have decided to buy or to sell a business, now what?

Once there a consensus in negotiations, a purchase agreement needs to be carefully drafted. The law often turns on how a court reads a word or a phrase. Our attorneys have experience drafting agreements that protect our clients from unnecessary liabilities.

How are assets transferred from the seller to the buyer?

The means by which assets are transferred varies depending on the nature of the asset.  Documents may be filed with the register of deeds, the Secretary of State, the State of Michigan, and through bills of sale.  A closing will be scheduled once all documents are drafted, reviewed by attorneys and financing institutions, and approved.

Preparing and reviewing leases, releases, waivers, property agreements and similar documents

Why would I hire an attorney to review “standard” or “form” documents?

Standard and form documents are just that, standard, and they are not written for individual situations.  In many cases, you, as a party to the contract can negotiate better terms or modify terms to meet your unique situation.