Business Organizations is a broad field of law concerning companies and other forms of business enterprises of all types and sizes and those who create them. This includes corporations, limited liability companies, partnerships, and other associations that carry on economic or charitable activities. Legal advice in this field of law covers a wide variety of topics, including the choice of type of business entity, choice of jurisdiction, process of formation, corporate governance, nature of ownership, operational matters, asset protection, combinations, acquisitions, dispositions, and dissolutions. Therefore, lawyers practicing in this area of law need to be well-versed in many different but related legal disciplines, including corporate, partnership, securities, tax, real estate, nonprofit, intellectual property, insolvency, fiduciary duty, and mergers and acquisitions law. Furthermore, because many business organizations have operations or are involved in transactions abroad, advising such entities can implicate not only federal and state laws within the United States, but also those of various foreign jurisdictions.
While some business organizations are relatively small, including traditional family-owned companies and entrepreneurial start-up ventures, many are large and complex enterprises with highly sophisticated governance structures. Accordingly, the legal work involved can range from representation of an entire organization, including its owner(s), in all aspects of the organization’s legal activities to engagement as a specialist in one or more discreet areas.
The legal skills required of a Business Organizations lawyer also include the ability to advise clients with respect to divisions of ownership and passing of ownership to acquirers and/or future generations, in addition to more immediate concerns regarding initial entity formation and operation. Properly advising clients with respect to structuring business enterprises, therefore, often requires an in-depth understanding of not only clients' strategic business objectives but also their succession and estate planning concerns.
In addition to the myriad issues that arise within a business enterprise, practice in the Business Organizations area also involves relationships between businesses and the interactions and transactions among them, including contracts, joint ventures, licenses, settlements, and mergers and acquisitions. Business Organizations is wide-ranging area of law that often serves as an entry point or primary point of contact for businesses to a law firm and the various types of legal services it provides.