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What happens to the family business in a divorce?

On Behalf of | Feb 19, 2021 | Divorce |

A couple who decides to divorce will have a lot on their plate to deal with. Child custody and visitation rights, child support, and alimony are just a few of the challenges they will need to address. Property division can become a serious battleground for spouses, and if they own a business, things can become much more difficult.

Even though business owners seem to be more likely to get a divorce, they may not know what will happen to their business if they get a divorce. Here are three typical outcomes for a business:


During property division negotiations, one spouse may declare that they want to keep the business, and the other spouse decides they do not. Whatever the reason, one spouse can use property division assets two purchase the other spouse’s share of the business.

Continue ownership

If both spouses decide that they want to keep their company’s current shares, they can proceed to do so. Both spouses may be able to run the business as they did before the divorce, or the business dynamic between the spouses may change. For example, one spouse may remove themselves from the business’s decision-making process and collect their share of the income from their company while the other spouse runs the business.

Total sale

If both spouses cannot agree with what to do with the business, or neither spouse wants to keep their share of their company, they may agree to sell the business entirely. The assets from this sale will then go through the same property division process that their other assets did.

Do not negotiate alone

If you are navigating your way through a divorce as a business owner, make sure that you are doing everything possible to protect your best interests. An experienced divorce attorney can help you get a fair and accurate appraisal of your company’s value, and they can also help you pursue the outcome you want for your business. Their experience can be your advantage, so make sure you have an attorney had your side in your divorce.