business partner stealing ideasIf you have a business partnership with someone, there may come a time when you begin to suspect that something is wrong with the company. It may be a feeling that you can’t readily explain, but something doesn’t seem right. On your own, you may never uncover any evidence of wrongdoing, but there are signs to look for, and when you see them, you can consult with a private investigation firm for a business investigation or asset recovery research to assist you with finding out the truth. The following are three common red flags you may see with your business partner.

1. You are being denied full access to company information.

This is a huge warning sign. If you have 50 percent ownership of a company, you should have full access to all company information. If your partner is preventing you from seeing even a portion of this information, it is likely that he or she is hiding something. If your partner believes that there is information that you may misinterpret because you lack the expertise to evaluate it properly, this is still no excuse to withhold the information from you. Your business partner can take the time to explain confusing aspects of the business that you don’t understand.

2. There are no clear answers to your questions.

This is common. Your partner is likely to have a certain skill set that is different than yours, and when your questions relate to an area that is outside of your expertise, your partner may dismiss them with a simple response, because it would take too long to give a detailed response to someone who is not an expert like your partner. In some cases, you may be a silent partner or own half the shares of a company, and your partnership is only that of an investor, so you are not involved in the day to day operation of the business. However, the recent performance of the company may not make any sense. If this is the case, you need to have a professional investigator look at the problem.

3. You are going through a divorce.

In and of itself, this is not a red flag, but if your spouse is a sole owner of a company, half of the company belongs to you, and this can become a big issue when you file for a divorce. The red flag is when a company that was successful in the past, is suddenly struggling, and this is happening right when you and your spouse are discussing a divorce, or perhaps right as you file for divorce. It is common for a business owner to attempt to hide assets or revenue from his or her spouse during a divorce. A professional private investigation firm can assist you with both asset identification and asset recovery. Our company has the skills to do this with businesses as well as individuals.

If you are experiencing any of the situations listed above, or simply have suspicions about the honesty of your business partner for other reasons, then contact our private investigation firm. We have the skill and experience to conduct a loss prevention investigation that will uncover any wrongdoing. What is important about your suspicions is that you take action. Doing nothing can cost you dearly.

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Bruce Robertson

Bruce Robertson is a private investigator and founder of Tristar Investigation, California’s premiere detective agency. Bruce is also a media commentator for the investigation industry, featured in the New York Times, CNN, History Channel, MSNBC, Los Angeles Times and many more. You can find him on Google+ LinkedIn and YouTube.