Starting a business requires a significant financial investment and a lot of hard work. Yet, if you and your spouse decide to divorce, you could lose the business you worked so hard to build. An attorney can help you keep your business without having to give up too many other assets.
Marital assets are equitably distributed in Florida divorces
Under Fla. Stat. Sec. 61.075, courts will classify your assets as either marital or nonmarital property and equitably distribute the marital assets between you and your ex. Equitable distribution means that courts will divide your marital assets fairly and equitably. Courts will consider several factors including the length of your marriage and the contributions of each spouse to the marriage.
What will happen to my business in the divorce?
The court will generally consider a business started during your marriage as a marital asset. If you started your business before you got married, your business could still be considered a marital asset if marital funds are used to support the business or profits from the business are used to support the familial household.
If the court determines your business is marital property, the next step will be to divide it between you and your ex. Even if your spouse did not assist in the creation of the business, they may still be entitled to a percentage of the business’s value if it appreciated during the marriage.
To divide the business, the court may require you to:
- Sell the business and divide the proceeds.
- Share ownership of the business with your ex.
- Have the business valued by an appraiser and buy out your spouse.
Business owners who are getting a divorce may benefit from consulting with an attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can help protect your rights to the assets that mean the most to you.