Should You Co-Own Your Business After the Divorce?

Entrepreneurship is to be commended. Ask any business owner and they’ll tell you that they work far more than 40 hours a week, or at least they did while they were working hard to get their new business or franchise off the ground.

If you’re getting a divorce, odds are your business is just as much, if not more valuable than your home, which could make it one of, if not the most important asset you have. Surely, you have invested blood, sweat, tears, and countless hours and resources into your business and therefore it should be protected.

When you were married, you never planned on splitting with your spouse, but on average, 50 percent of marriages in the United States end in divorce. The risk of divorce is even higher for second and subsequent marriages. And if your business is not protected by a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, it’s probably going to be a big part of your divorce settlement because businesses are treated just like any other marital asset.

Should You Keep the Business?

If you or your spouse have built a successful business during the course of the marriage, neither of you may want to part with it, especially if it’s “your baby,” a great source of income, or you’re otherwise attached to the company. After all, many business owners view their employees as their “work families” and they would never want to give that up.

In fact, the thought of selling it to the highest bidder or buying one of you out of the business may not be desirable at all. If that’s how you feel at this point in time, you may want to consider co-owning the business after the divorce, but whether this solution is practical depends on your relationship with your spouse.

When You Are on ‘Good Terms’

Can you successfully co-own your business with your ex after the divorce? Much of it depends on your relationship with each other. Can you separate your work and professional lives? Can you continue to get along, and can you see eye-to-eye on business decisions and the direction of the business?

Or, is the blood so bad that you argue constantly and you can’t stand to be in the same room together? Much like co-parenting after a divorce, if you can set your differences aside and continue running the business as a team, you may be able to continue running and building the family business without any major issues. In any case, you should explore all of your options with an attorney and the consequences of each.

Next: Can a Prenup Be Invalidated?

To learn more, contact the Law Office of Dennis R. Vetrano, Jr., LLC today!

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