In Delaware in 1998, the ratio of corporations to limited liability companies (LLC) and partnerships was about three to one. Today, the ratio of “alternative entities” to corporations has flipped. For every one Delaware corporation (275,000) there are now about three Delaware alternative entities (826,000). The explosion in the number of alternative entities in Delaware illustrates a nationwide trend: the growing importance of LLCs and partnerships in the contemporary business landscape.

The increasing prevalence of LLCs and partnerships has accelerated the development of the law governing these entities.  During the January intersession period, Vice Chancellor Donald Parsons of the Delaware Court of Chancery instructed students on the distinctive legal characteristics of LLCs and limited partnerships.

From his position on the Court of Chancery, which is regarded as “one of the country’s most influential business courts,” Vice Chancellor Parsons has been both an active participant and a close observer of the recent developments in LLC and partnership law. Before joining the court in 2003, Vice Chancellor Parsons was a senior partner at Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell in Wilmington, Delaware, where he specialized in intellectual property litigation.

“The opportunity to learn about alternative entities from a judge well versed in the subject was awesome,” said Kwesi Atta-Krah, a 2L who attended the course. “The judge focused a lot on recent cases, which I thought was helpful in shedding light on some of the recent complex litigation issues surrounding these entities.”

--Jay Stirling | January 21, 2015