Closing the sale of a small business without a lawyer?


I have a small ecommerce store which generates a profit ($200K to $300K a year) that someone would like to purchase. The value of the deal isn't huge, it's just 1.5x the yearly multiple. As such, paying fees to a lawyer on top of that makes the acquisition less attractive.

Is it possible to complete the sale of such a business with generic forms you find on the web and eliminating the need for a lawyer completely? Or do buyers require that you have one for the deal?

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asked May 29 '14 at 16:30
Zachary Masten
12 points
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  • I'm not sure, but you *might* be overestimating the cost of a lawyer for something like this. You'll get $300K to $450K out of this. A lawyer *might* cost $3K. That's less than 1% of the total sale, and to me feels negligible. I doubt the buyer would require you to have a lawyer, but they'll probably have one of their own, which means you'll be at a distinct disadvantage. – rbwhitaker 9 years ago

1 Answer


You could do it without a lawyer, but you'd have to really pay attention to all the minute legal details. Just a couple of things to pay attention to:

  • Non compete. How long the term will be (usually 0-2 years) and the exact language in it.
  • How the sale is structured? i.e. Will they acquire the actual entity that owns the site (corporation or LLC) or just the assets.

I'd recommend getting a lawyer to help you navigate any potential pitfalls.

Also, If you don't have an accountant, getting one could help you save money on taxes on the sale.

answered May 30 '14 at 15:34
Nishank Khanna
4,265 points

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