What Should You Do If A Business Partner Breaches Their Fiduciary Duty In Florida?
A dispute with a business partner is never easy to navigate. There can be a lot on the line—both personally and professionally. If you believe that your business partner breached a fiduciary duty, it is imperative that you know your rights and your options. Here, our Miami partnership dispute lawyer discusses the things to know about breach of fiduciary duty claims in Florida.
Background: Fiduciary Duty is the Most Comprehensive Standard of Care in the United States
To start, it is important to know that a fiduciary relationship imposes the highest “standard of care” under U.S. law. In the broadest sense, a fiduciary is required to act in the best interests of the party to whom they own that duty. For example, a registered investment adviser (RIA) has a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of his or her clients. A fiduciary duty means putting another party’s best interests above one’s own best interests.
A Business Partner’s Fiduciary Duty is Limited Under Florida Law
In Florida, business partners do not owe each other a comprehensive fiduciary duty. In other words, your business partner is not technically fiduciary to you. Similarly, you are not a fiduciary to your business partner. However, business partners do owe each other and their partnership certain limited fiduciary duties under Florida Statutes § 620.8404. Specifically, this includes:
- A duty of care to the partnership; and
- A duty of loyalty to the partnership.
Note: A breach of fiduciary duty is not the only type of legal claim that a person can bring against their business partner. You may have other legal options available. For example, if you suffered damages because of a breach of the partnership agreement, you can take action on those grounds.
Steps to Take If You Believe Your Business Partner Violated their Fiduciary Duty
Partnership disputes are complicated. If you have a legal claim, it is crucial that you take proactive measures to protect your personal and professional interests. Here are some key steps to take if you believe that your business partner violated their duty of care or duty of loyalty in Florida:
- Take action to protect the business from any further losses;
- Thoroughly document exactly what happened—preserving evidence;
- Carefully review the partnership agreement to confirm your rights and responsibilities;
- Consult with an experienced South Florida partnership dispute attorney; and
- Consider all available options for the most efficient, cost effective resolution.
Consult With a Top Partnership Lawyer in Southeastern Florida
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, we are a commercial litigation firm dedicated to helping our clients find efficient, cost effective answers to a wide range of legal disputes. If you believe that your business partner breached their fiduciary duty, our partnership dispute attorneys can help. Give us a call today for a confidential initial appointment. With offices in Miami, Wellington, and West Palm Beach, we provide partnership dispute resolution representation throughout the whole region.