Not every marriage is destined for happily ever after and, unfortunately, there is often a lot at stake in a divorce. For business owners, this situation can be especially complicated and have disastrous effects if not handled properly. Much like a car or a home, your business will be considered an asset, which means that its value can be split between you and your spouse. In some cases, a business you start prior to your marriage will not be considered individual property. However, any increase in its value might be considered marital property since it was earned during the course of your marriage.
So, what can be done to protect your business if your marriage ends up failing? Below are some helpful tips for you to consider:
- Pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement: If you started a business prior to your marriage, you could protect it in the event of a divorce by having your partner sign a pre-nuptial agreement. If you fail to get a pre-nuptial agreement, a post-nuptial agreement can afford your business the same protection. These legal documents are not just for millionaires and celebrities. Anyone who wishes to protect their assets, property, or business can benefit from a pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement.
- Sacrifice other assets: If you are already going through, it is obviously far too late for preventative measures, but that does not mean you cannot still protect your business. Consider giving up other valuable assets, such as your vehicle, collectibles, and retirement accounts to retain your business. Essentially, by giving up assets that amount to the same value your spouse would have been awarded by splitting up the business, you might be able to keep it.
- Arrange to make payments over time: Another option that can help protect your business is to arrange to make payments to your ex for their share of the business over a span of time. These can be monthly and come from the business’s own cash flow or even a bank loan.
- Have a neutral, third-party valuate it: Part of protecting your business involves getting a fair valuation of it. Consider using a court-appointed valuation professional and then ask an outside party to review it before you agree to it. Otherwise, you could end up having to give up more assets or pay your spouse more for their share than what it is actually worth.
Divorce Attorney in New York
If you own a business and are headed for a divorce, you will need a skilled attorney on your side to help you effectively dissolve your marriage while protecting the business you worked hard to create. At Goldweber Epstein LLP, our New York City Attorneys have over 40 years of experience in helping clients navigate the divorce process while keeping their needs and goals in mind. You should not have to go through this on your own.
Get started on your case and give us a call at (917) 809-7669 to schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable divorce attorneys.