My answer to What's the difference between founder and co-founder?
Answer by Ken Larson:
The word co-founder connotes equality but that is rarely the case in the real world. An enterprise with two founders needs an operating agreement. An operating agreement is a separate document, not controlled or required by the state or the federal government but very important to your company. It should be a simple, straightforward document you and you and your prospective partner(s) can draft yourselves. It should cover such matters as % of ownership, how revenue will be distributed and other general matters, as well as who can commit the company in the form of credit cards, who signs checks on the company account and other administrative matters. Buying out a partner should also be covered.
I have seen many enterprises fail or go through terrifically hard times due to lack of an operating agreement. The parties should sign it after a review by a lawyer. It should then be notarized and made an official part of the company file.
A free sample operating agreement with instructions is at the References file in the Box in the left margin of the following site: http://www.smalltofeds.com