Divorce is difficult for everyone involved. When one or both spouses own a business, it can become a nightmare. All or most of your assets may be tied up in the business. Your spouse may also work for the company. Perhaps you both jointly own the business. One thing is sure, neither of you wants to be in business together or working for your spouse after the divorce.
In a Georgia divorce, all assets in a divorce are evaluated to determine whether that asset is marital or non-marital. The same is true for a business. Your business is likely the most valuable asset you own. You probably do not want your ex-spouse as a business partner after the divorce.
A business established during the marriage would be considered marital property no matter what either spouse contributed to it unless:
- One spouse received the business as part of an inheritance.
- One spouse received the business as a gift from a third party.
- One spouse received the business as part of a court judgment.
- Both spouses signed a prenuptial agreement designating how the property will be divided.
- The Business has a Partnership, Shareholder, LLC, or Agreement in place that requires partner or shareholder agreement to purchase divorcing parties share in the business.
A business established before the marriage is considered non-marital and thus the property of the party who established the business.
If a business is considered marital property, one spouse can buy out the other, or both spouses could sell the business and divide the sales price. Either way, a business valuation expert would evaluate the business assets and income and arrive at a value for the business.
If you are looking at a divorce and own a business, whether partially or wholly, you should consult an experienced divorce lawyer to guide you through the law’s nuances and provide the best protection for your business. Contact Tyler Moffitt’s family law office today for a free consultation with an experienced Georgia divorce lawyer.