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How do I make business purchases in New Jersey?

Businesses change ownership all the time. Recently, this blog discussed the sale of one discount retailer's brand to another in a large corporate merger. Small businesses also go through business purchases and sales, which can be complicated for parties on both sides of the transactions.

The sale of a business necessitates strict accounting of business assets because in many cases the new owners of the business acquire both the right to operate under the business's name as well as all of the goods associated with its operations. Dozens of documents can be generated in the process. The specific documents required are dependent upon the type of business that is changing ownership.

For example, the sale of assets often requires an asset purchase agreement. Many pieces of evidence must be included as exhibits to that agreement. Exhibits must demonstrate any contracts or liabilities that the new owners will assume under the sale. They must also document any trademarks, assumed names and other names attributable to the business.

Sellers must disclose any warranty or other claims made against the business, and buyers must usually sign off on a variety of waivers related to the seller's continuing liability. Sellers must disclose existing licenses and permits relevant to the business and, often, the legal counsel of the parties must offer opinions on the status of the sale.

The previous discussion of documenting assets for sale is an incomplete rendering of all of the possible requirements a business may face when it changes ownership. For that reason, this post should not be taken as legal advice. Any business owner who seeks to sell or acquire a new business entity should find reliable legal support to ensure that the transaction is properly managed.

Source: Findlaw, "Completing an Asset Sale," Accessed August 26, 2014

Source: Findlaw, "Completing an Asset Sale," Accessed August 26, 2014

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