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If in a business partnership of two people one dies is the remaining partner the sole owner?
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If in a business partnership of two people one dies is the remaining partner the sole owner?


Yak Rider
No, of course not. The dead owner's share of the business will be part of his estate and disposed of as directed in his Last Will and Testament. Many partners in a business will have life insurance on each other so that the surviving partner can buy out the family of the dead partner with the insurance proceeds.

la buena bruja
It depends on how the partnership was set up. One partner may have left his/her share to a spouse.

This depends upon the business partnership's articles of formation.

Look for a "Survival" clause.

No, unless the partnership agreement states that that is the case. Otherwise the deceased partner's interest will go to his heirs.

Depends upon the partnership deed if their is one and the Partnership Act if not.

It would depend on what was written in the partnership agreement. If there was no written agreement, the surviving partner may find himself in partnership with the decedent's heirs.

No. If the partner who died had a will and left it to somebody they are the new partner(s).

Depends first on the partnership agreement, then on the will

Thin Kaboudit
When the Partnership was constructed, this would have been addressed in the legal documentation establishing it. It is more likely that that part of the business partnership that belonged to the now-deceased party would pass to his/heirs, as determined by their Will or by Probate.

Each share is separately owned and ends up in the estate of the deceased. Partners can have a partnership agreement that allows for sole ownership, or buy-out from the estate at an established price. Partners can also buy life insurance to provide enough for the buy-out but in the absence of a will or an agreement, the dead partner's share of the business devolves to his estate.

Partnership has legal meaning. It means a partnership between two people who would otherwise be sole-proprietor with personal liability. If by partnership, you really mean two ownership of an LLC or corp, then it is an entirely different case.

So assuming the form of business is a "true" partnership, generally, no, you do not just get the whole business just because someone has died. The ownership interest is part of his estate that can be bequested away or sold. It belongs to his estate and you will have to buy him out as if he is still alive, or his heir will inherit it, or that company may dissolve by being sold, and you are free to start your own business afterward.

provided the family member allow if there is a will.

Suthern Yankee's S.O.
Ok. The technical answer is, NO, unless he doesn't have any "immediate" family. It really depends on his will and what he does. He can bequeath his ownership to his wife. Now, you would then have to buy her out. I'd be doing my homework real fast if this is the case or you will have a partner that may not be as receptive to you as your original partner was. You needed to set up BEFORE this, a succession plan. If one dies, what happens.

depends on the will, you may have to buy the other partners benificery out. lots of legal issues.

i agree with Kazoo if your partner has a will and it says your the sole owner then yes but if not i think the familiy of the one that passed on will get

depends on how the business contract is written,.....the deceased partners share could go to his/hers family,.....

If th deceased partner has made a will and has left his half to a relative, then that is legally binding. But if there is no will, his assets will go to probate, and the executor of the will will have control, once al debts etc have been paid out, the remainder goes to the beneficiary.

Kazoo M
That would depend on the will of the deceased partner.

Dan H
It depends on your written partnership agreement. All of this should be decided when you enter into the partnership and must be put in writing and signed and notarized by both partners.

If you don't have a written agreement and your partner has died, then her share will end up being part of her estate, after all half the business is an asset and worth money, correct?

An easy way through this if both partners are still alive is to take out life insurance policies on each partner with the proceeds to go to the deceased partner's relatives and the business to wholly go to the surviving partner. Your partnership agreement must have these wishes spelled out in writing! Make sure the insurance policy proceeds are roughly equivalent to the perceived value of the business. The business can pay for the policies.

If they own shares, then these will be distributed in accordance to their will, so the other part of the business may be owned by lawyers etc until arrangements are made to sell it off etc.

Depends on how the business is set up.

Under English law it depends on the partnership agreement which is a document setting out what happens in various eventualities, including death.

Accounts have to be taken as at the date of death, and all the partnership assets valued (including work in progress if there are intangible assets) and set against the debts. Effectively the partnership comes to an end on death.

Unless the partnership agreement states otherwise, the deceased partner's assets pass under his or her will or, if none, under the law relating to intestacy. Thus the business assets do not normally pass to the other business partner(s), but to the heirs of the deceased partner.

gabe k
in some states it goes to the spouse of the deceased partner

it depends on what kind of partnership it is


My partner took his life and I have made every attempt to locate his wife. She is no where to be found. Her home was foreclosed. Can I set up an estate for him and appoint myself as executor, or someone whom I know who will handle the estate. The only asset that is co-mingled is RE that is not deeded JT WOS. I have been paying everything on RE and want to get his name off of deed so that I may dispose of it. Any ideas?

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