Divorce is never easy or simple, but some factors can complicate the proceedings. Business ownership is one of those factors. If your spouse is also your business partner, you are going to need some assistance figuring out how to fairly deal with the company that you have stewarded. A Suffolk County business divorce lawyer from our firm can help with that.
Is Our Business Seen as Property?
If you started a business during the marriage or the business grew during your marriage, it is likely to be considered marital property. If you started the business before being married and then brought your spouse on as a partner, it is still going to be considered marital property.
This means that your business needs to be valued. You want this valuation to be as accurate as possible, which is why your lawyer will generally consult with another skilled professional who understands your industry. This makes it easier to get a more accurate valuation, which can help make the property distribution process easier overall.
Of course, your spouse and their lawyers might come to a different conclusion about the value of the business. This can be argued about and resolved just like any other issue in a divorce agreement. Once everything is settled, you can decide how to proceed with your business and its operations.
What Happens to the Company After I Divorce My Business Partner?
You have a few options available to you when deciding what to do with your business after a divorce. You can:
Sell the business: This can sometimes be the easiest option. You sell the business and split the proceeds, and then you are ready to tackle the rest of the property distribution process. However, this might not be the best option for you or your spouse. You should take into account whether this is a good time to sell. Maybe your company is experiencing fast growth and could be far more valuable later on, or maybe this is just a bad time for the industry and selling would be ill-advised.
Both keep your stake: Sometimes two former spouses can put everything aside and continue running a business together. If they cannot do that, one spouse could step back and become a silent partner with less say in management. They still benefit from the business and its success, but they do not have to work with a former spouse that they would just end up clashing with.
Buy your spouse out of their interest: Sometimes one spouse wants to keep the business going. They can buy their ex out of their stake in the company, leaving them free to walk away.
Consult a Knowledgeable Divorce Attorney
When making big decisions like this, it helps to have an experienced attorney at your side. Contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates, Inc. and set up a consultation with our legal team. We would love to tell you more about how we can help you protect your business and your interests.