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The M&A Process

Congratulations, you signed a letter of intent (LOI) to buy a business, but now you don't know what to do next. Or maybe you're about to sign an LOI, but want to go with eyes wide open and know the next steps. So what are the steps of the M&A process? The process of buying a business is simple, but not easy. The Mergers and Acquisitions process can be broken down into 5 main steps:
  • Initial discussions
  • Letter of Intent
  • Due diligence
  • Business valuation
  • Purchase agreement and closing
    merger-and-acquisition-process-flow-chart
    These are the five phases of the acquisition process

Initial discussions

The first step of purchasing a business is when buyers and sellers in a purchase sale have informal discussions about whether it makes sense for the buyer to buy the seller's business. At the very least, the seller should have the buyer sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) since the seller is probably handing over some sensitive financial and market information. The seller may provide tax returns, profit and loss reports, and daily or weekly sales reports. The parties also often discuss price, deal breakers, and a general timeline for the sale. In order ...
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What do M&A Lawyers do?

An M&A lawyer is in charge of setting all the pieces of the merger or acquisition together. She in the middle of the conversation between both parties and their respective advisors. The M&A attorney is the one leading the transaction, as she is the point of contact that reunites the rest of the deal team and directs the purchase from beginning to an end.

Do You Need an M&A Lawyer to Buy a Business?

No, you don't “need” a lawyer to buy a business—as in, there is no legal requirement to hire a lawyer to buy a business. You also don't "need" a contractor to build a house. You don't "need" a roofing company to change your roof. You don't "need" an accountant to do your taxes. But we hire people because of their expertise. And quite frankly, DIY legal services are not the highest and best use of your time as a business owner. (The highest and best use is bringing in business and making sales).

How Does an M&A Attorney Help in the Business Purchase?

The attorney has two goals when helping a buyer buy a business.
  • The lawyer helps you make an informed decision when buying your business
  • Puts safeguards in place if things were to go wrong in the future.
In order to help you make an informed decision, the lawyer:
  1. Works with other business experts to determine the value and liabilities of the target business
  2. Ensures the target
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