Our solicitors are experts in farming partnerships
We are specialists in farming partnerships and can help you with setting up a partnership, dealing with change, handling a dissolution or resolving a dispute. Call us for a free initial chat on 0808 139 1606 or send an email to [email protected]
As a firm of solicitors with a strong background in rural and agricultural law we are highly experienced in dealing with all legal issues relating to farming partnerships.
We are able to set up new farming partnerships, or prepare a partnership deed for an existing partnership that doesn’t have one. We can also deal with bringing farming partnerships to an end, or help a partnership transition when with a partner leaves or a new partner joins.
We know from experience how important it is for farming partnerships to be very clear about what constitutes the assets of the partnership. Farming businesses are different from other forms of commercial enterprise and raise specific issues that require an experienced legal eye. So when considering partnership assets, for instance, the lawyer needs to look not only at the farm’s land and buildings but also take into account assets such as farm machinery and kit, as well as entitlements to grants, subsidies and quotas.
Clarity is also required when it comes to specifying what each partner’s entitlement to capital is. This may be related to capital contributions made by individual partners.
A farming partnership should be clear about what happens when one of the partners leaves. Will the partnership be dissolved or can it continue? How will the departing partner’s shares be valued? What is the mechanism for the continuing partners to buy out those shares?
Partners must remember to serve all legal notices and observe key time limits, and we can ensure that these requirements are complied with.
The day to day management of the farming partnership is another key issue. The individual roles and duties of the partners should be agreed, as should the partnership’s decision making structure.
Unfortunately disputes within farming partnerships are not uncommon, even (or especially) where families are involved. The partnership should therefore be clear about how matters like expulsion or long term sickness will be dealt with, and how disputes should be handled.
Our primary role is to guide and advise you so that disputes can be avoided. However, if a farming partnership dispute does arise then we have a specialist litigation team which is highly experienced in resolving such disputes. In addition to dealing with disputes between partners we are also able to advise on equitable interest claims (when someone is entitled to an asset that is legally owned by a third party) and proprietary estoppel (which can arise when a promise is broken; such as – if you work on the farm then I will leave it all to you when I die.) We are always happy to provide a free case assessment and consider whether we can deal with a farm dispute on a no win, no fee basis.