One of the most difficult questions in New Jersey Business law concerning the retirement of a business owner is determining the value of the owner’s share of the business which the remaining owners must pay to buy out his share. This can be difficult even if the departure itself is on good terms. The method and amount of the valuation can cause vicious disputes even among friendly partners. The Chancery Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey in Bergen County recently issued a published decision on this problem in the context of a limited liability company.
In that case, Namerow v. Pediatricare Associates, LLC, four pediatricians were members (owners) of a medical practice named Pediatricare Associates, LLC. The Amended Operating Agreement which governed valuation of the business upon member retirements provided that: