Message from the Associate Dean
Welcome to the website for the online LL.M. Program in Closely-held Businesses at Western New England University School of Law. I am pleased to introduce to you our innovative graduate program in closely-held businesses.
We offer the only live, interactive online program in closely-held businesses in the country. Our online program removes the barriers of distance to make the program available to students throughout the United States. This approach to distance learning provides unprecedented interaction with classmates and faculty, bringing the immediacy of the classroom experience directly to your home, office, or wherever you may travel.
All courses are live and taught through the use of virtual classrooms over the Internet. In other words, the classes are in real-time. Since we are employing a live synchronous system, the professor and the students meet at the same time but not in the same place. With this synchronous system, the professor and students can engage in active classroom discussions. The classroom is equipped with a whiteboard on which the professor can write. The professor can also place PowerPoints and other visual aids on the screen for the students to review and discuss. Each student is supplied with a headset and microphone so that he/she can actively participate in classroom discussions. As an added feature, both the video and audio of all of our online classes are recorded. If a student has to miss a class, the student can listen to the recorded class.
Over 90% of all businesses in the United States are closely-held. Most of these businesses are family owned. Such businesses usually are operated and controlled by the owners either through a corporation or a limited liability company. These closely-held entities differ greatly from publicly traded businesses where ownership is widely disbursed and where the business is operated by professional managers.
Our program will emphasize the practical aspects of representing such closely-held businesses. The program will enhance the ability of practicing attorneys to represent closely-held businesses and owners of interests in such businesses. Above all, the curriculum will focus on the practical drafting skills an attorney needs to represent effectively closely-held businesses and their owners.
Any attorney whose practice includes representing closely-held businesses must have extensive knowledge of, and training in, a number of diverse areas of law. These areas include shareholder agreements, limited liability company operating agreements, business financing, taxation of subchapter S corporations, taxation of partnerships and limited liability companies, employment law, copyright law, trademarks, trade names, and trade secrets.
The courses will focus on the practical aspects of drafting documents and representing closely-held businesses. Required courses range from Design and Drafting of Corporate Operating Documents to Income Taxation of Limited Liability Companies and Partnerships. Electives include such options as Designing Fringe Benefits and other Compensation for Owners and Key Employees and Business Succession Planning. I invite you to review our skill-oriented curriculum. Please visit our LL.M. Course Descriptions page to learn more about each specific course.
I urge you to view the other pages of our LL.M. website to find out more about our new and distinctive online program. I also invite you to contact me for more information. I would be pleased to discuss our program with you. My address is:
Professor Frederick D. Royal
Associate Dean for the LL.M. Program in Closely-held Businesses
Western New England University School of Law
1215 Wilbraham Road Springfield, MA 01119-2684