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partner

n. 1) one of the co-owners and investors in a "partnership" which is an on-going business enterprise entered into for profit. A "general partner" is responsible for the debts, contracts and actions of all the partners in the business, is an equal in management decisions unless there is an agreement establishing management duties and rights, and shares in the profits and losses based on the percentage of the investment (either in money or effort) in the partnership. A "limited partner" does not share responsibility for debts beyond his/her investment, cannot share in management, and shares in profits based on a written agreement. A "silent partner" is no different from any partner except he/she is not visible to the public and has no part in day-to-day management. 2) slang for "domestic partner," usually two people living together, either homosexual or heterosexual, sharing lives and possessions, and not married.

See also: domestic partners  general partner  limited partnership  partnership 

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The People's Law Dictionary by Gerald and Kathleen Hill Publisher Fine Communications