How do Spouses Divide a Business in a Divorce?
When you get divorced, you will need to figure out how to share custody of your children, what will happen to the family home, and much more. The situation can become significantly more difficult if you and your spouse own a business together. In this day and age, more and more people are entrepreneurs, and many married couples decide to go into business together. While this can provide flexibility for your family and can be rewarding, it can cause additional complications if you and your spouse decide to end your marriage.
Business Interests and Property Division
In Florida, the law requires you to divide marital property in an equitable manner as part of your divorce. Business interests can be considered marital property, especially if you started the business together. This means you will need to decide how to fairly divide your interests in light of all of your other marital property, as well.
There are generally three ways that spouses can divide a business they own, as follows.
You sell the business and divide the proceeds – In some cases, divorcing business owners will choose to sell the entire business at market value, and then split the proceeds in a fair manner. Each spouse can then use their proceeds to start their own enterprise should they choose to do so.
One spouse buys out the other – Spouses can decide that one person will continue to run the business while the other bows out for a new opportunity. In this situation, one spouse will need to buy the other’s business interests. They can do this with liquid capital or other compensation. If the spouse does not have the funds to buy the other half of the company, they can work to arrange another solution. For example, one spouse gets the business in exchange for the other spouse getting the house or other valuable property.
You keep running the business together – There is no requirement that one owner has to give up their share of the business in a divorce. If your divorce is civil and amicable, you might decide it is possible to continue to work together despite your divorce. Some people may even be able to work better together if they are not experiencing marital strife.
No matter what you decide to do regarding the business, it is important to determine the accurate value of the company and explore every option. Not only should you consult with a knowledgeable lawyer, but you might want to have an accountant or business expert review the situation.
Discuss Your Situation with a Brandon Divorce Attorney Today
At the family law firm of Carman, Bevington & Finegan, P.A., we help clients in a wide range of situations through the divorce process. Our Brandon divorce lawyers know how to handle the most complex divorce cases, including those involving businesses and high assets. Contact us online or call 813-654-3444 to learn about how we could help in your divorce case.