Does Divorcing My Partner Also Mean Divorcing My Business?
Regardless of whether it was six years ago or sixteen years ago, you made a decision. You made the decision to get married to someone. This “special someone” at one point was the light of your life and the light of your world, your other half—or your “better half” or even your “best friend”. But then it all changed Suddenly this significant other—your spouse—became a stranger or became working against you rather than with you, or maybe even hurt or betrayed you. Either way, now you face another decision: divorce. But there’s another problem Your spouse is also your business partner. So not only are you worried about divorcing the person who you vowed to be with until “death do you part”, you also worried about what is going to happen to your business. Your business is your baby We understand. Your business is your baby. You’ve spent years putting crazy amounts of time, money, resources, and energy into building and maintaining it. So what are your options? Do you lose it all in a divorce? “Splitting” the Business In the state of Florida, your business is only in danger if it is considered a “marital asset”. This means that you and your spouse developed the entity as a union. However, if you or your spouse owned the business prior to your marriage, then it likely will not be considered an asset. On the other hand, if the entity increased in value during the marriage, then the other spouse may be entitled to part of the business’s value. However, this determination will vary on several factors, which can include:
- The amount of contribution to the business made by each spouse (usually a percentage)
- Other forms of income
- Other facets of a marriage – (child-rearing, education, career opportunities, household contributions, etc.)