What are the tensions between active and non-active children?
Minneapolis attorney Sally Grossman describes the strains between active and non-active children in a family business.
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There can be a lot of tensions between active and inactive children, and it’s not – it doesn’t mean that they have a bad relationship. It doesn’t mean that Suzy doesn’t love Jonny, Jonny doesn’t love Suzy, but when one is active and one is inactive, they necessarily have a conflict of interest. They have very different goals and objectives.
So, for example, the active children can be viewed by the inactives as what’s been called plunderers because they can pull value out of the business; they can get compensation, they can get a car, they get that nice company trip to Hawaii, which just happens to be in February when everybody else is freezing.
So, there’s a tension there, and then by contrast, the active child can view the inactive children as philanderers who just sit on the couch and cash distribution checks and don’t have to work for a living, and so they can resent the child who’s able to pull all the value out, and the person who can pull value out and is slaving away at the company to make other people rich can resent that. There’s a lot of tension.