Family-Owned Businesses

Flick Gocke Schaumburg has extensive expertise in providing legal and tax advice to family-owned businesses of every size and legal form. Our interdisciplinary approach – close collaboration among specialists in tax and commercial law, succession, wealth/estates and valuation – is especially well received in this field. Many prominent family entrepreneurs with domestic and cross-border operations have placed their trust in our advice for decades.

Ongoing Advice for Family-Owned Businesses

We support family-owned businesses in all legal and tax matters relating to the operating business and strategic alignment. We build and optimize organizational structures, assist with complex restructuring programs, and advise on company acquisitions and disposals, mergers and the founding of joint ventures.

We also specialize in implementing supervisory-board, advisory-board and other corporate-governance structures, and in restructuring shareholder groups. In cases of conflict, we represent the interests of family-owned businesses and their shareholders both in and out of court. We are regularly called upon for support with tax audits as well.

In succession planning and structuring for businesses and entrepreneurs, our firm is one of the leading practices in Germany.

Advice for Business Families

Apart from offering advice to family members on tax and wealth matters, the work we perform for business families often entails drafting family-governance rules. We produce corporate constitutions, structured to avoid conflicts, as a constituent of active succession planning. If disputes arise nonetheless, we represent family entrepreneurs before public courts and arbitration tribunals, and in mediation proceedings.

Foreign Activities of Family-Owned Businesses

International topics, including planning for relocating to or from Germany, constitute a large portion of the work we undertake on behalf of family-owned businesses. In cases where an enterprise wishes to invest or transfer a portion of its operating business abroad, we support family entrepreneurs in all aspects of tax and corporate law and, if necessary, consult the relevant experts in partner firms abroad.

We likewise assist business family members who are moving abroad or marrying a foreign national. Such cases give rise to many issues relating to international private law, income-tax law and inheritance-tax law, which we resolve quickly and comprehensively.

Family Offices

Family offices are steadily gaining in significance as a property asset management model. For many years, we have been advising family entrepreneurs on the formation and structuring of family offices, and providing ongoing support in all legal and tax matters involved in administrating a family office and the assets it manages. We assist many single and multi-family offices with regulatory issues and other questions of tax and the law, and also respond to specific inquiries, typically on structuring investments in all categories – in particular the acquisition of domestic and foreign business interests or real estate, and the establishment of art collections.

We offer the following Services for Family-Owned Businesses:

  • General tax-law and corporate-law advice
  • Structuring and reorganization of family-owned businesses
  • Purchase and sale of family-owned businesses, and joint ventures
  • Implementation of supervisory-board, advisory-board and other corporate-governance structures
  • Family governance for business families
  • Supervisory-board, advisory-board and estate-administration engagements
  • Advice on litigation and out-of-court settlements, and representation in shareholder disputes and arbitration
  • Domestic and cross-border wealth planning and succession planning
  • Advice on establishing and administrating family offices
  • Expatriation and immigration planning
  • Assistance in tax audits