Legal Question in Business Law in Pennsylvania

if you are business with a partner who uses proceeds from the business to engage in illegal activity is the other partner held responsible.

Asked on 2/22/12, 12:15 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Michael Duffy Duffy Law, LLC

Hi there,

In terms of criminal responsibility you'd need to consult a criminal law attorney, but the fact that you are in a business partnership with that individual really wouldn't directly affect your criminal liability. You'd be as criminally responsible the same as any individual, and if you had no involvement with the criminal activity, you would likely not face any criminal charges, the same as any individual. But again, contacting a criminal law attorney would be well-advised.

In terms of your business liability, assuming you're organized as a general partnership, partners are generally all responsible for the activities and liabilities of the business. That means that if the partnership gets sued in civil court for those illegal activities, for example, all partners would be personally financially responsible for that liability. You might have some recourse against a partner who acts against the interests of the partnership in dereliction of his duties as a partner, but that's by no means a certain solution. Other business entities (other than a general partnership) might have different results in this regard, at least to the extent of the liability.

You should contact an attorney immediately with your specific facts so you can properly protect your interests and know how to proceed.

If you would like to discuss your matter further over a free and confidential phone consult, please contact me at your convenience.


Michael J. Duffy

Duffy Law, LLC


1500 Market Street

12th Floor, East Tower

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19102

52 Berlin Rd.

Suite 3000

Cherry Hill, NJ 08034

[email protected]

Please note: The information provided here is for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinion on specific facts or circumstances. You should consult an experienced attorney concerning your particular factual situation and any specific legal questions you may have. No attorney-client relationship is created merely through the exchange of information via this web site. Michael J. Duffy will not undertake representation of a client without the client first signing a written retainer and representation agreement.

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Answered on 2/22/12, 12:28 pm

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