When a couple decides to end their marriage, they aren’t just declaring under the eyes of the law that the romantic relationship is over. The couple is also ending the life that they built together.
In some cases, a large portion of this life involved running a business together. So when they end their marital partnership, these couples are also forced to ask the question “do we end our business relationship as well?”
When a couple owns a business together, there is no absolute right or wrong way to deal with the marital asset during a divorce. The best decision for one couple may be selling the business. For another couple, it might be best for one spouse to buy out the other. Even other couples will continue as partners in the business.
For those that decide to stay in business together, there are a few things that can help make sure the relationship goes a little more smoothly post-divorce.
The first is to understand that just as the marital relationship changed, the business relationship may too. Even after a divorce has been finalized, this decision doesn’t have to remain final. A spouse has the right to change his or mind down the road.
During divorce, spouses should make sure that they have a back-up plan, a way out of the business relationship if they decide down the road that working together is no longer the right choice — just make sure that the bylaws include a clause that allows one spouse to exit the business.
Check back in to the next post in our Harris County divorce law blog when we finish discussing some of these helpful hints.
Source: Entrepreneur, “If You Run a Company Together, What Happens When You Divorce,” Kate Taylor, Feb. 25, 2014