If you are getting a divorce and your spouse wants a part of your business in the deal, you need to be ready to defend yourself and your assets. A Memphis, Tennessee business valuation divorce lawyer from our firm can help you do that. Here’s what company owners need to know about divorce and what kinds of challenges they could face.
How Can I Tell if My Business is Separate or Marital Property?
What is really important here is whether or not your business can be considered separate or marital property. If you established your business before you got married and your spouse had no role in the company, it is likely considered separate property. You came into the marriage with it, so you should leave with it. Many judges would probably think this to be a fair arrangement.
However, if you established your company while you were married, matters can get more complicated. Your company could be considered marital property, especially if your spouse worked with you in some capacity or you used shared marital funds to prop up your company at any point.
Your business could also be considered marital property if it was established before your marriage but grew significantly during you and your spouse’s time together. This is possible even if your spouse did not work for you. They could argue that, while they had no role in your company, they stayed home and took care of childcare and housekeeping duties while you worked. This is where things can get a bit murky, and this is why you want an experienced divorce attorney on your side.
Do I Need a Prenup to Protect My Business?
Prenuptial agreements are often misunderstood, but these documents can actually be the perfect tool for protecting a business that you have already established. A prenup can be an easier sell if both parties entering a marriage have plenty of assets to protect. If your soon-to-be spouse has an issue with a prenup, it might be tough to push the issue. If you are serious about protecting your company, however, it might be a necessity.
How Can the Value of My Business Be Determined?
When a business does need to be split up, it needs to be properly valued. Do not try to hide any assets or money during this process. You would just end up creating more trouble for yourself later.
Forensic accountants can pore over everything and determine a value for your business. This can be determined in a few ways. They might look at the assets your business owns, the income it could generate over time for you and your spouse, or the value of similar companies that have recently been sold. In any case, a proper business valuation is a necessity if the company is going to be subject to the equitable division process.
Talk to Our Divorce Lawyers
The stakes are high, but you do not have to fight for your business by yourself. Contact Rice Law and schedule a consultation. We would love to tell you more about our experience helping clients just like you as they navigate a high net worth divorce.