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Hi. I own a small business in which my boyfriend loaned me

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Hi. I own a small business in which my boyfriend loaned me about 80% of the money to me in order to open. It has been 2 years since I opened the business. With the economy the way it is it has been a struggle and I have not been able to pay my boyfriend. Since I have not made payments to him he wants 51% of the business. I want to do what is fair and since if it weren't for him I would not have had the financial backing to open my business. He is a trustworthy person and he did use his own money to help me without any kind of contract to repay him. Do you think I would be doing the wrong thing by allowing him 51% of the business? We have been together for 11 years and he has never done anything to ever financilly to hurt me. As a matter of fact, he has done nothing but to help me. The reason he wants 51% is because he wants to try and turn things around especially so he won't lose his money (which I understand). Please let me know your advice. Thank you.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 5 years ago.
Good morning,

I'm sorry to hear of your dilemma.

Giving your boyfriend 51% of your business would be a bad business decision. You state that there was no agreement with regard to your obligation to repay the seed money for your business.

While you qualify the money as a loan, and he has the right to ask you to repay the loan, he is not legally entitled to a managing share of your business.

If he wants to turn things around for your business he can do that without becoming the owner of the business.

While you don't say what a type of business you have, or how much he put in at the beginning, you could be giving him a huge financial advantage. If he loaned you $2,000 for a business that 5 years from now nets $100,000 a year, that's not fair to you.

You might offer him a share of the profits over a certain period of time to the extent that he makes changes to your business that improve the profitability of the business. Short of that, you are better off just repaying the loan.

I wish you well.

Thank you very much for having allowed me to assist you. It would be greatly appreciated if you would click the green Accept icon so that I can receive credit for having assisted you.

Best regards,

Doug

LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 28001
Experience: I have 25 years experience in the practice of law.
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