Katie L. Lewis, P.C. Family Law
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The end of a marriage doesn't have to be the end of a business

If you are considering divorce, a variety of factors could be influencing your decisions. The end of a marriage could have a substantial impact on your financial future, and your concerns in this area may only grow deeper if you are the owner of a business.

In community property states, such as Texas, the court assumes that you and your spouse own all assets jointly, potentially leaving you to wonder what will happen to your enterprise. Chances are, you may have spent a great deal of time and effort into making your business successful, and you probably don't want to see it come to any harm.

Safeguarding a business during divorce

One of the first aspects to consider is whether your business is separate or marital property. In the former, you may be able to retain ownership of the company following divorce. However, if your business, or even a portion thereof, is marital property, some factors to consider that may help you safeguard your business from harm may include the following:

  • Previous agreement:  If you and your spouse have a prenuptial agreement in place, it may dictate the process of property division concerning the assets in the arrangement. A properly signed and executed prenuptial agreement could be ironclad during divorce proceedings.
  • Co-ownership:  You could also consider attempting to co-exist in the business, which might be healthier to its longevity overall. However, this might prove challenging, especially following a potentially emotional process such as divorce.
  • Buyout:  Another option that may be available to you is a complete buyout of your spouse's business interests. This may depend on your available funds or your ability to acquire a loan.
  • Partnership:  If a buyout isn't possible, you could consider adding a partner to your business. While this may be a viable option, it is also one that could require a great deal of deliberation.

Another option is to sell the business outright and split the proceeds. With the amount of time and effort you have invested in the company, you may wish to avoid this at all costs, and seeking guidance from someone who is knowledgeable in such intricate matters could be in your best interests.

Obtaining guidance

With numerous options to consider during the end of a marriage, each of which has its own potential advantages and disadvantages, you may be feeling somewhat intimidated by the process. You could speak with someone with experience in every aspect of divorce for assistance and advice. Obtaining guidance early on could help you gain a better understanding of the process and prepare you to pursue the most favorable outcome concerning the future of your company during legal proceedings.

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