Your recourse is to defend on the LLC's requirements as being unconcionable and a breach of the implied covenant of good faith. And, simultaneously sue the LLC members for breach of fiduciary. Majority shareholders have a duty of good faith towards minority shares. If your buyout is substantially different than any other shareholder, then you are clearly being treated dishonestly.
Apparently, the arbitrators didn't find a problem, which makes me wonder what's going on. I can't review your documents, but you can certainly ask your attorneys why you should have to take the short end of this stick. Maybe it's simply that you signed an employment contract going in that requires you to sell back your shares under this onerous scenario.
In response: When you say I am to "defend on the LLC's requirements ..." do you mean bring a lawsuit against the LLC and its board of managers? The decision of the arbitrators stated that they were not going to "second guess the Board......there was no breach of fiduciary duty here; no fraud or abuse of discretion or 'ulterior motives.'" However, the decision did cancel out the Employment Agreement's demand for "delivery of a release of claims," stating that "In light of this award, however, no 'release' should be required and the 'redemption agreement' does not appear to be required by either the Employment Agreement, or the Operating Agreement."
The Employment Agreement clearly states "At the closing of any sale of the membership interests in the Company, the Company shall deliver to the employee a certified bank check in the amount equal to the purchase price or, in the Company's sole discretion, one or more subordinated notes, in an aggregate principal amount equal to the purchase price of such membership." No description of how or anything beyond that statement. This is what I am trying to deal with. May I bring suit for breach of fiduciary duty even though the arbitrators have ruled on this? Or, do I bring suit against the members of the Board of Managers for being out of step with the requirements of an LLC's duties of the Board of Managers, i.e., "...breach of implied covenant of good faith?"
I think that the implied covenant suit works better, because it appears that the LLC is trying to add some additional terms that effectively permit it to never buy you out.
I'm not sure how the arbitrators don't see a breach of faith here. It seems like a pretty weak ruling to me, but they must have some case law to back it up. In order for me to interpret the arbitrator's ruling, I'd need to read the whole thing -- and that's out of scope for this venue.
What do your attorneys say?
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).