There are numerous things at stake for business owners who are going through the divorce process. In many cases, their business is one of them. If you are a business owner, please read on and reach out to our knowledgeable Bergen County family law attorneys to learn more about how to navigate divorce as a business owner and how our firm can help you through every step of the legal process ahead. Here are some of the questions you may have:
Will my business be subject to equitable distribution in a divorce?
There are two types of property when it comes to equitable distribution: marital property and separate property. Generally, marital property involves all property acquired during the course of a marriage, and separate property involves assets acquired by either party prior to a marriage. Generally, marital property is subject to equitable distribution, and separate property is not. However, even if a business started out as separate property before marriage, it may be considered as marital property in the equitable distribution process. For example, if your spouse had no role in your business, though he or she stayed home and raised your children, handled daily chores, or contributed otherwise to your business success, your business may be considered marital property. This is because your spouse’s contributions to the home and familial responsibilities allowed you to devote more of your time to growing your business.
How do business valuations work in a divorce?
When a business is determined to be marital property, it will have to be valued so that it may then be distributed equitably. This is not always easy, and it is often necessary to call upon financial experts to analyze various complex assets associated with your business. You and your attorney must ensure that you include full disclosure of all assets, debts and liabilities, and any other financial information concerning your business at this time. Failing to do so may result in an IRS investigation into your finances, which can cause various legal issues down the line, including potential criminal charges if there is any questionable financial activity.
Is there any way that I can protect my business from a divorce in NJ?
There are certain actions you can take to protect your business from a divorce. Those who are not yet married may draft prenuptial agreements which can outline what shall happen to your business, should you ever get divorced. If you are already married, you may draft a postnuptial agreement that essentially serves the same function. Finally, if you and your spouse own a business together, you can draft a shareholder agreement that details both spouses’ interests in the business and what shall happen with the business, should they ever get divorced.
Contact our experienced New Jersey firm
We understand how confusing certain legal issues can be, which is why we are dedicated to providing individuals with the compassionate, knowledgeable legal representation they deserve. Aronsohn, Weiner, Salerno & Kaufman has helped clients with various difficult legal challenges for over 40 years, which is why we know we have the experience needed to do the same for you. For experienced legal counsel regarding family law, litigation, business law, real estate, and criminal law, you know where to turn–contact Aronsohn, Weiner, Salerno & Kaufman today to schedule a consultation.