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HOT TOPIC Fiance is calling my business "his/our" business, threatening to sue me

legaljanie

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Aug 1, 2018
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I started a business early this year and my partner was not supportive. It was a software platform that helped in his area of business. He is a doctor.

So i suggested he might be willing to help me market it and sell it. He said no. He was very rude and said he would never be “my bitch”.

So i got it off the ground myself and got very lucky to find an investor for a small portion. That was when my fiance got interested. He then he started giving advice. He offered valuable information and it helped me and my investor/developer. But then he began demanding to be in meetings w my developer. He said it was OUR business. (The legal documents only list me and i did that on purpose).

He became threatening and during arguments said he COULD sue me after the fight he would say he would never do that, but I should be aware that he COULd.

My developer/investor (one in the same) backed out and said that it was mainly because of my fiance. He felt that I should have told him more about our level of romantic involvement up front and that he was not comfortable with the fact that HE noticed my fiance positioning himself as part owner of the company. He is gone. He said NO MORE. My fiance blamed me and suggested that I went to him and secretly told him that he was threatening to sue...and that scared him off. But that's not the case. I never said a word, because I knew that would have been a red flag.

Well i started getting meetings for NEW investors. I took him to the first meeting and he explained why it was so good in his area of expertise. He took over the meeting and then later told me that no one would invest because i looked pissed off and i look like drama.

They did ask who owns the business and i said i do.

Fortunately i got a second meeting. I asked who they wanted at that meeting. They said it was just an intro meeting to more investors so just me was fine.

My partner went batshit crazy. I got that text about 45 minutes before and i told him it was ok. He was going to drive with me anyway downtown. He could just drop me off like he always does.

He was mad. Very mad. He said that i am showing my true colors. And they aren’t pretty. That I only praise the almighty God of money. I don’t respect him or the relationship. That I am money hungry and he thinks I will leave him once i get the funding. He said he will no longer help me. And he may even cancel some of the things he already did for me.

He said i should have mandated that he is in the meeting because we are a team. (Which he says i don’t understand the definition of) Ans he screamed and yelled at me until he dropped me.

He said “guarantee you fail”. I said wow. Thanks. He said that i can’t explain like he can in his area of expertise and that I make mistakes.

He said “good luck cause this is going to need every ounce”.

I went in. I was flustered but i did ok. I got a third meeting.

When i came out he just kept yelling. Said he won’t help me anymore. And that since i won’t put his name on the company it looks really bad. That anyone with 2 cents would know that I didn’t accomplish this myself. (Since he has expertise in the field that my software serves)

He said life with me is not fun. That all i do is argue. (He was the one arguing!) and that i should make a decision because he’s so sick of my behavior.

I had always said why do you need your name on legal docs when we are supposed to be married? He said great. Now you are blackmailing me into marrying you? Either you marry me or you get nothing?!

I just happened to look at an email on his phone today that he sent to a colleague of his == trying to help "me" get into a new sector. The problem is this email -- he tells this "friend" of BOTH of ours -- that WE started this business together and that WE are doing outreach. He says it's "OUR" business.

So it's clear...that he is indeed positioning himself as partner or co founder....and my investor/developer was right. He is trying to state that it's "his" business too.

What would you do? He feels he has helped so much...and that while I paid him 1k a month as a consultant...it's not enough for him...

I asked him how much equity he wants. he wouldn't commit. I said 3%? 5%? He said no....and he wouldn't sign an NDA or any documents that prevent him future ownership.
 

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legaljanie

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Aug 1, 2018
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You should probably ask a legal person about your situation. My advice would be to consider him your ex-fiancee.
Is there anything I am missing here. Should I have given him more opportunity to partner with me? He won't put any money into this or even co-sign with me until he sees his name on equity papers.

he told me that a bank can't give him/us any loans on this unless they see papers with his name on it. Is that true?
 

Arun Siva

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rogue synthetic

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We only get half of the story here. True, it doesn't look good from what we've read so far. But I have to wonder, is any of this out of character? Is the guy generally a jerkass all around, or is this behavior news to you?

Either way, just based on what you've said the other folks are right -- this is heading for a brick wall at full throttle.

Is there anything else here you haven't mentioned about this situation?
 
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legaljanie

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No….he is difficult all the way around. but he’s a very good looking…surgeon. He’s been married twice before…left his first wife while she was pregnant with their third child (for the neighbor)….



I didn’t know this until I was already engaged and living with him. But he grabs womens’ attention like bees to honey. He is nearly bankrupt right now… because he has overspent. But I see his business rebuilding and I keep thinking I will be left (or I will leave him) right about the time his business takes off again…. and I will watch him with a hot new woman.



Yes…he is difficult in every area. I left my tv career to move with him…. and this is my new attempt to being a success…after leaving everything for him.





\\\\
We only get half of the story here. True, it doesn't look good from what we've read so far. But I have to wonder, is any of this out of character? Is the guy generally a jerkass all around, or is this behavior news to you?

Either way, just based on what you've said the other folks are right -- this is heading for a brick wall at full throttle.

Is there anything else here you haven't mentioned about this situation?
 

Xeon

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What a toxic partner. If you continue going deeper with him into the relationship (both romantic and business), it'll only get worse. Maybe there's a reason why he's twice divorced?
 

rogue synthetic

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No….he is difficult all the way around. but he’s a very good looking…surgeon. He’s been married twice before…left his first wife while she was pregnant with their third child (for the neighbor)….



I didn’t know this until I was already engaged and living with him. But he grabs womens’ attention like bees to honey. He is nearly bankrupt right now… because he has overspent. But I see his business rebuilding and I keep thinking I will be left (or I will leave him) right about the time his business takes off again…. and I will watch him with a hot new woman.



Yes…he is difficult in every area. I left my tv career to move with him…. and this is my new attempt to being a success…after leaving everything for him.

\\\\
Given what you've said here, we can figure on two things pretty reliably:

1. You know the right answer.

2. You are very unlikely to make a move on the right answer.

The first thing is because, well, c'mon. You've said it yourself: you've made a bad deal.

The second thing is that you know it's a bad deal but you don't really see it that way. Not really. When people know the right answer but don't act on it, it's because they don't want to act on it. You express a preference to come out of this ahead... but you're acting like someone who is content where she is.

Unless something changes, an adventurous entrepreneur here could make a tidy sum by going short on your odds. Chances of things being any different (better for you) in a year's time are hovering somewhere around the odds of a very large man becoming thin after saying "I need to go on a diet".

So what are you going to do about it?
 

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E-Sharp

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No….he is difficult all the way around. but he’s a very good looking…surgeon.
Oh.
He’s been married twice before…left his first wife while she was pregnant with their third child (for the neighbor)….
If that alone isn't a giant red flag, I don't know what else would be
He is nearly bankrupt right now… because he has overspent. But I see his business rebuilding and I keep thinking I will be left (or I will leave him) right about the time his business takes off again…. and I will watch him with a hot new woman.
There may be more to this story, but it seems everyone else who has responded in this thread is rightfully more concerned about you personally than your business.
I hope you can find whatever support or help to cut your losses here. Life is too short for whatever you're putting yourself through with this guy.
 

The Abundant Man

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No….he is difficult all the way around. but he’s a very good looking…surgeon. He’s been married twice before…left his first wife while she was pregnant with their third child (for the neighbor)….



I didn’t know this until I was already engaged and living with him. But he grabs womens’ attention like bees to honey. He is nearly bankrupt right now… because he has overspent. But I see his business rebuilding and I keep thinking I will be left (or I will leave him) right about the time his business takes off again…. and I will watch him with a hot new woman.



Yes…he is difficult in every area. I left my tv career to move with him…. and this is my new attempt to being a success…after leaving everything for him.





\\\\
So what if he's good looking...have some self respect.

Him being twice divorced and leaving one while she's pregnant with his own child. (More absentee fathers causing miserable children...thanks!) Huge major RED FLAG

Bankrupt because of overspending? Even more baggage...

Victim blaming on you for being angry? Oh my dear lord...one of those people. Did his parents not teach him anything?

"But he grabs womens’ attention like bees to honey." He's probably one of those narcissistic people who charms and love bombs them. Uses his status as a surgeon to get what he wants( *Cough* Donald Trump *Cough*) In the end doesn't really care about them. Just likes the attention and hot sex.

Point is...find a better guy and a better business partner. Remember as Jim Rohn says, "You are most like the 5 people who hang out with."

Is this really a boy that you want to marry, spend the rest of your life with, be your business partner and possible father your potential children?
 

Danny Sullivan

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Of course this works for men too.

I never understood why wome would stay with a guy that's obviously a bad person and bad influence because other women find him hot and they would be the one that dumped him. Just goes beyond my mind and logic.

There's > 7 billion people on the planet. If he's not the right one, theres a high probability that you'll find someone else who is.

Best of luck.
 

kelvinfernandezm

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1. You already know the answer to this question. Seriously everyone knows the dynamic of the relationship they are in. You can only choose to ignore it.

2. You're not going to leave him because he’s a very good looking…surgeon.. I'm sure you enjoy all the drama because you already know about his past but you're still together.

3. You don't really care about this business and your investor/developer saw right through you. You only came to this forum to bitch about your fiance because your bestie would not understand the context to your drama that so happens to involve a business twist.

4. Finally do everyone a favor and tell us what business it is so a real entrepeneur on this forum can start working on it and actually get it done.
 

Xeon

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4. Finally do everyone a favor and tell us what business it is so a real entrepeneur on this forum can start working on it and actually get it done.
LOL that's badass. On a side note, there's this saying "Women love jerks"....
 

JohnZ123

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Have you even tested the market and demand yet? Is it generating profit? Seems like a lot of action fake to me.

Also, the solution to your relationship issue is extremely obvious.
 

TinyOldLady

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but he’s a very good looking…surgeon
Do you see your fiance as a status symbol? If so you don't deserve a better treatment

3. You don't really care about this business and your investor/developer saw right through you. You only came to this forum to bitch about your fiance because your bestie would not understand the context to your drama that so happens to involve a business twist.
this is probably true
 
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Ascension

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Picture this, you stay with him, give him a share of your business and then he dumps you after he gets back on your feet, like you're expecting.
Now you're stuck with a toxic ex as a business partner who has clearly shown that he does not want you to succeed because his ego can't handle it.
Wouldn't you wish you would have ended it yourself and taken control of your business and your life?


On another note, I'm totally unqualified in legal matters but to me it seems good that you paid him a consulting fee, now he can't claim he got nothing in exchange for his expertise and deserves a share of the company.
 

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Mainstream7

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For the next time, set clear boundaries. State that you are the sole owner from the beginning.
If your fiance helps you, decide if this is a partnership or not. If this was a partnership from the beginning then fine. If not, dont let both intermingle. Your biz is yours.
Tell him ownership and control is most fundamental for you and is a pillar/principle in biz, which is why you dont want him as a partner. It has nothing to do with your interpersonal relationships.

His behaviour is not acceptable.
He is just becoming greedy and wants to piggyback on your success it seems.
That's how it looks from the outside.
 

IGP

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Surely this is a troll... lol
 

ChrisR

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No….he is difficult all the way around. but he’s a very good looking…surgeon. He’s been married twice before…left his first wife while she was pregnant with their third child (for the neighbor)….



I didn’t know this until I was already engaged and living with him. But he grabs womens’ attention like bees to honey. He is nearly bankrupt right now… because he has overspent. But I see his business rebuilding and I keep thinking I will be left (or I will leave him) right about the time his business takes off again…. and I will watch him with a hot new woman.



Yes…he is difficult in every area. I left my tv career to move with him…. and this is my new attempt to being a success…after leaving everything for him.





\\\\
What are you still doing with this guy?

I'd be running for the hills if I were you.
 

Andel

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Girl, he had left his wife when she was pregnant... I do not need to read anything more.
Can't you see how self-centred he is?

I
ME
MINE

These words describe him.
I assume that your family finds him perfect partner for you and that's why you hesitate.
Run away as far as you can.
 

Kak

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I'd say you're both self centered, and that won't work in a marriage. Him more than you, but not by much. I've also only heard one side of the story.

When you enter marriage, you need to enter it with at least SOME confidence that the damn union will last. Saying "MY" business not "OURS" implies a horizon on the marriage before it even begins. Please don't get married or have children together.

As far as the business... You didn't mention a contract... I don't see your legal exposure.
 
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rollerskates

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No….he is difficult all the way around. but he’s a very good looking…surgeon. He’s been married twice before…left his first wife while she was pregnant with their third child (for the neighbor)….



I didn’t know this until I was already engaged and living with him. But he grabs womens’ attention like bees to honey. He is nearly bankrupt right now… because he has overspent. But I see his business rebuilding and I keep thinking I will be left (or I will leave him) right about the time his business takes off again…. and I will watch him with a hot new woman.



Yes…he is difficult in every area. I left my tv career to move with him…. and this is my new attempt to being a success…after leaving everything for him.





\\\\
Oh, honey, no. RUN. If he would do it to others, he would do it to you. It doesn't matter what someone's profession is, a jerkwad is a jerkwad. I would seek the advice of an attorney.

Remember, if he can do it to others, he will do it to you.
 
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legaljanie

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To answer the questions here, yes there was a formation lawyer and a C-Corp. When he told me he wouldn't' help me financially....I started to search for a loan. I didn't get far. But, I did stumble upon the investor/developer I mentioned. He gave me a small amount as a convertible note. He got equity...and the rest went to me.

I didn't bring my fiance in on it because at that point I was angry that he told me I would fail...that I should never attempt this...and that he wouldn't be my 'bitch' but was suddenly having a change of heart. So, I told him this investor was getting equity --

Of course that's when began trying to help ...he even told me he couldn't wait until my investor/developer was done with my project because he wanted to give him HIS ideas. So he was kissing his arse....asking to attend all the meetings etc. But it backfired for both of us....of course.

Now...I'm out of money. I have to either get the funding that I'm hoping for.. or I'm at a standstill.

The platform is finished. I was just accepted into a very astute accelerator program. They teach people like me how to make the business more attractive to investors and once we are ready...they court us to angel investors.

But as I said I have gotten my own investors on the line...have the third meeting with them on Friday. I may be okay...financially. If this opportunity doesn't come together....I will have to give up.

I asked him (since he is SO interested in my business now) if he would help me get a loan -- and he could be partners with me. He said he wouldn't do it and the bank wouldn't allow him to get a loan for the business with me (co-signor) unless he was on the business. So he wants documents that show his equity before he even gives me a dime. I told him I would do that as soon as I could...but lawyers take time and I would need some of the money to PAY for the lawyers. He said NO>
 

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