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Options for business owners during divorce

Most couples in California and elsewhere may enter their marriages with every intention of remaining together throughout life. However, this isn't always the case, and upon making the decision to divorce, many may wonder how best to go about preparing for the subsequent process. One topic that many consider it vital to prepare for pertains to the division of assets, and for business owners, knowing the available options prior to entering property division negotiations could prove imperative.

There are a variety of factors for business owners to consider when preparing for divorce, some of which may depend on the variables present. For instance, if there is an existing prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, the document may dictate how the process will go. These agreements may provide guidelines as to how the business is valued or how it will be divided, but even without such an arrangement in place, business owners may still have options.

If a business owner can show that the company was started before marriage and was kept separate from marital assets, it may retain it separate identity during divorce proceedings. However, there are a variety of scenarios in which a company can be mingled with marital assets. Should owners fail to pay themselves competitive salaries or allow their spouse to take an active role in the company, at least a portion of the business could be deemed community property.

Business owners who wish to take every possible measure to protect the future of their companies could benefit from seeking guidance early in the process. When facing a divorce, an owner could choose to consult with a family law attorney for guidance on all his or her available options. An attorney in California can address all a client's concerns and assist in developing a strategy to pursue the best outcome achievable concerning the future of his or her business.

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