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Protecting a business in divorce

Maryland entrepreneurs who are facing the end of a marriage might worry about how divorce will affect their business, especially if the company has been developed primarily during the marriage. The more successful a personal business has become, the more challenging it may be to consider how much of that business a parting spouse will receive through asset division. However, assumptions can undermine one's efforts, making it important to have an understanding of the process and possibilities even before seeking legal counsel for divorce action.

Spousal support could be an obligation for either partner depending on who has a business and who has a greater level of income. It is important to realize that greater involvement by both spouses in a company implies a potentially greater share for the less dominant member of the business team. If the other spouse has been minimally involved, however, there may be less value assigned to that party. Understanding the likely goals of the other party could make a big difference in one's approach to reaching a settlement in the property division stage.

It is important to begin divorce proceedings with a plan, which is similar to handling a business plan. Owners should approach divorce as if it is a business deal and be willing to negotiate as needed, making concessions in some areas to achieve the most important goals. It is also important to work with a trustworthy team of lawyers, accountants, and other professionals.

An entrepreneur who has a prenuptial agreement in place may assume that the business is safe from loss during divorce. However, this may depend on whether the agreement was prepared legally in the first place. Before starting divorce proceedings, an individual might want to assemble prenup paperwork as well as relevant financial and business data to bring when consulting a divorce lawyer.

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