Katie L. Lewis, P.C. Family Law
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Expert Strategy For Your Family |Texas Board of Legal Specialization Family Law Attorney

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What's mine is yours, or maybe not

Dreaming, creating and setting goals for the future are integral facets of young adult life in America. After all, our nation may very well be the single best place on the planet for providing opportunity and resources to make your dreams come true. If you're one of the lucky people in Texas who have actually built a business from the ground floor up, and have enjoyed a certain amount of success, you understand the paramount importance of protecting what you have worked so hard to earn.

Perhaps, you got married while you were building your dream, or maybe you created your business after you'd already tied the knot. As many others who have trod the path before you have learned, marriage doesn't always last a lifetime. The numbers of divorce in this state and beyond have steadily increased over the years. It's a reality for many business owners like yourself.

Will divorce affect your business?

Company owners who have successfully navigated the divorce process while managing to keep their businesses intact have often cited the following as useful tips:

  • It is always wise to seek clarification of state law regarding marital assets and division of property before entering divorce proceedings.
  • Generally speaking, it is best to keep household money and business separate. Avoiding borrowing from one to pay for the other often prevents certain complications that may arise if someone files for divorce.
  • Taking less of a salary to keep business coffers full in the hope of sharing the surplus together in retirement often backfires when divorce unexpectedly occurs and a soon-to-be former spouse demands a full share of business assets.
  • It is sometimes possible to retain ownership of a business by agreeing to forfeit other assets instead.
  • Knowing whether the basis of a business valuation is on its current value or projected future value can prevent negative surprises.

Protecting your assets

Unless you have an experienced background in law, negotiations regarding division of business assets in divorce can be quite complex and difficult to understand. Keeping the following ideas in mind may be of benefit in your particular situation:

  • Texas is a community property state, which means all assets are divided equally in divorce.
  • State law also requires equal liability, meaning spouses will be equally responsible for outstanding debts when they divorce.
  • Extenuating circumstances and various details may bear significant impact on assets and debt liability when ending a marriage in court. Relying on experienced guidance can maximize the chances of obtaining an agreeable settlement.
  • A family law attorney is often a skilled negotiator who may be able to help you resolve problematic issues out of court; however, a good attorney is always prepared to aggressively litigate any issue that warrants it on your behalf.

Getting divorced doesn't have to mean the end of your business dreams. By arming yourself with information and acting alongside effective representation, you can develop a secure plan to help you move forward toward continued business success and new life goals.

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