Michigan Business Lawyers Offering Sophisticated Representation

At Weisman, Young & Ruemenapp, P.C., founded in 1980, our skillful and experienced attorneys are dedicated to providing effectiveness, efficiency, and excellence. We understand that our clients need personal attention, and we strive to provide legal representation that is cost-effective, responsive, and results-oriented. We take pride in our stellar reputation among our clients and fellow members of the legal community. Our attorneys look forward to establishing a long professional relationship with you and responding to all of your legal needs.

Business Law

We have the utmost respect for our clients' knowledge of their particular businesses but recognize that our clients need legal assistance from time to time with various complex situations that fall outside of their business expertise. Our business attorneys have the proficiency to address a wide variety of transactional issues relative to our client's business and corporate planning needs including contracts, licensing, entity formation, executive and deferred compensation, employee and noncompetition agreements, mergers and acquisitions, sales of businesses, business succession, dissolution planning, loan transactions, and other issues. Your choice of business entity (C corporations, S corporations, LLC, partnership or sole proprietorship) will shape the course of your business, and we can advise you on the legal consequences of choosing a particular structure. Our attorneys can provide and file the necessary organizational documents as well as documents needed to keep your entity in good standing with the IRS and State of Michigan. We can also help clients address legal issues and disputes that may be faced by the business in the future using organizational, shareholder or operating agreements that provide for the use of alternative dispute resolution, specify the distribution of profits and losses, limit the liability of officers, directors, or managers in the company, and describe the terms of liquidation and sale of the business or sale of an owner's interest.

Commercial and Business Litigation

Our commercial and business litigation team has extensive experience in resolving business and contract disputes, business break-ups, shareholder disputes, debtor-creditor disputes, employment disputes, and business torts. We also handle foreclosures, finance and lender liability, trade secret litigation, restrictive covenants, franchise litigation, and real estate and construction disputes. The nature of the particular dispute will determine which law applies and what remedies may be sought. For example, if the directors’ actions in a corporation are fraudulent, willfully unfair, oppressive, or illegal, it may be possible to obtain a range of remedies through a shareholder oppression lawsuit. These remedies can include cancellation, dissolution, alteration, an injunction, or a buyout of the aggrieved shareholder.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Our Michigan business attorneys recognize that litigation can quickly become expensive. Often, it is important to place a controversy in a form of alternative dispute resolution. These forms include arbitration, mediation, and case evaluation, and each has its advantages and disadvantages. For example, while litigation is adversarial, mediation is a collaborative process, and coming to a resolution is voluntary; it can be conducted confidentially. In most cases, any of the aforementioned ADR approaches is more cost-effective than litigation. Generally, ADR allows parties to maintain a better relationship moving forward than does litigation.

Asset Protection Planning

At our firm, we define asset protection planning as a deliberate effort to put in place programs and strategies to shield one’s assets against the claims of existing and prospective creditors. For example, we can advise doctors on how to structure their asset holdings to minimize the consequences of a medical malpractice judgment. For another example, we can set up offshore asset protection trusts in other jurisdictions. Domestic asset protection trusts are trusts that include specific asset protection provisions allowed by certain specified jurisdictions, including Michigan, that govern the trust. Our Michigan business lawyers may be able to help you even if you have pending claims; we believe that each client’s situation is unique and can construct a plan accordingly.

Estate and Gift Planning

We appreciate that you have devoted great effort throughout your career to accumulating wealth which, someday, can be transferred to your loved ones. Our estate planning attorneys take a personal approach to guide you through plans designed to preserve and transfer wealth while avoiding unnecessary taxes and probate costs at the time of death. At a basic level, we design, draft and help implement Wills, Revocable Trusts, Financial Powers of Attorney, and Medical Powers of Attorney. With a properly funded Revocable Trust, a client should avoid probate (and its associated costs) entirely and usually with minimal to no tax consequences. At a more advanced level, there are situations in which Special Needs Trusts, Qualified Personal Residence Trusts, Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts, or Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts may be implemented. Our firm uses both the basic and, if necessary, the more advanced estate planning tools to develop solutions to our client's unique situations on a case by case basis. Our goals are to insure client intended results and eliminate inefficiencies and ambiguities, Will and trust contests and payment of unnecessary taxes that can result from lack of planning.

Probate, Estate Administration, and Trust Administration

Services of this nature usually arise at a time of great emotional difficulty; for example, following the death of a loved one or the increased inability of a loved one to care for his or her needs without assistance due to health problems. We have the expertise to assist our clients with probate, estate administration, trust administration, as well as the preparation of estate tax returns, and gift tax returns. In Michigan, probate courts are required to ensure that the decedent’s estate is appropriately distributed after his or her death. Probate administration involves appointing a personal representative, gathering assets, paying any outstanding bills, and distributing the assets remaining after the debts are paid. Sometimes challenges to a will or trust are brought in the form of a will contest or trust contest. Estate administration varies depending on whether there is a valid will in place and whether an expedited process can be used. Our probate attorneys strive to perform services in a timely and cost-efficient manner throughout this difficult period of time.

Finance and Commercial Lending

The business lawyers at our Michigan firm handle many different aspects of banking, finance, and commercial lending, including asset-based or asset-backed lending, mortgage and real estate lending, business lending and SBA financing, consumer lending, equipment leasing and financing, loan workouts and restructuring, and creditor protection in bankruptcy. A borrower’s business will dictate the best options and strategies for a proper loan structure. Sometimes traditional financing is not the best option for a business, and we can advise you on specialized loan transactions related to equipment leasing and letters of credit.

Real Estate

Our firm offers a full service real estate practice serving property owners, prospective property owners, landlord and tenants in the areas of acquisitions and sales, commercial and residential construction, landlord-tenant disputes, easements, financing, distressed loan workouts and foreclosures, leases and subleases, zoning, and title insurance and survey analysis and review. Our services include counseling regarding conveyance and closing documents, financing, formation and structuring of legal entities, negotiation, drafting and review of leases and purchase documents, review of title work, zoning matters and land use. Many different Michigan laws can affect real estate transactions, zoning, and lending. The Michigan Zoning Enabling Act empowers municipalities to enact zoning ordinances to regulate land use, and it requires that these ordinances create zoning Boards of Appeal for municipalities. While Zoning Boards of Appeal decisions are final at the municipal level, they can be challenged in Circuit Court. Sometimes it is possible to negotiate solutions to problems that arise in connection with real estate. For example, lenders may be willing to restructure troubled loans through modifications, forbearance agreements, or stipulations of settlement. Restructuring the debt can allow a borrower to retain assets or limit their losses.

Our firm has extensive real estate investing experience developed through many client transactions and decades-long personal investing. Potential investors will want counsel to review not only the legal aspects of a potential investment, but also the risk/reward analysis and answer the question “Is this a good deal for me?”

Tax Law

In connection with the services provided by our business attorneys, the tax implications of any business transaction must be addressed to ensure that correct decisions are made with regard to complying with tax laws and minimizing taxes whenever possible. Tax concerns may be dictated by the business structure that was chosen when the business was formed. Our strong understanding of tax law allows us to provide knowledgeable representation and creative ideas for the many unique situations which can arise in business transactions as well as vigorously represent clients in a tax dispute. For those clients facing issues related to tax assessments or audits, our tax attorneys have extensive knowledge in dealing with federal and state tax issues. Our comprehensive tax practice includes representation before U.S. Tax Court, Michigan Tax Tribunal and other courts which address tax matters. We also have extensive experience in seeking resolution with the IRS Office of Appeals to settle tax disputes fairly and outside traditional litigation, as well as with Offer in Compromise Specialists (both IRS and State of Michigan) for those taxpayers who either dispute their tax liability but wish to avoid the costs of litigation or simply cannot afford the tax liabilities imposed.

Consult a Business Lawyer in Michigan

Weisman, Young & Ruemenapp, P.C. is committed to its mission to provide legal services to individuals, businesses, and estates. We are dedicated to effectiveness and excellence. Our attorneys represent people throughout Michigan and Ohio. Call us at (248) 258-2700 or use our online form to set up a consultation to discuss your needs.