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Association of two or more persons or entities that conduct a business for profit as co-owners. Except in the case of the limited liability partnership, which shares with the corporation the characteristic of being treated as a single entity whose members have limited personal liability, a partnership is traditionally viewed as an association of individuals rather than an entity with a separate and independent existence. A partnership cannot exist beyond the lives of the partners. The partners are taxed as individuals and are personally liable for torts and contractual obligations. Each is viewed as the agent of the others, and traditionally all are jointly and severally liable for the tortious acts of any partner.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on partnership, visit Britannica.com.