Divorce is always hard. There are very few issues, however, that can make a divorce more complicated than dividing a business. If you and your divorcing spouse own a business together, it’s likely your most valuable asset, and it’s also likely to have more than just monetary value. A small business is typically a labor of love—and a lot of labor at that. Walking away from a business that you’ve poured your blood, sweat, and tears into can be extremely painful and challenging. If you are considering a divorce or have already started the process and there is a business involved, you need to speak to a Connecticut divorce attorney as soon as you can.
The Value of Your Business
The first order of business when it comes to dividing a business is to obtain a business valuation. You and your divorcing spouse can pursue a valuation together, or you can each obtain your own. If the business valuations are both on the up-and-up, they should come to similar conclusions. Even small businesses are complicated, however, and some people aren’t above hiding business assets and engaging in other nefarious business practices. It’s essential to obtain a business valuation that you trust.
Your business obviously has more value than just a price tag. If you helped create and/or run the business, there is a lot more involved. An experienced Connecticut divorce attorney will help you evaluate your best options and will aggressively advocate for the best possible resolution to dividing your business.
Marital Property in Connecticut
Everything that you and/or your spouse acquired during your marriage will probably be considered marital property in the State of Connecticut. Even if you own the business outright—if you acquired it during your marriage—it’s likely to be marital property. Marital property can also include a variety of other assets:
- Real estate
- Bank accounts
- Life insurance policies
- Pension and retirement plans
- 401(k) accounts
- Employment bonuses and commissions
Because Connecticut is an equitable distribution state, the court will factor in several variables related to your marriage in calculating the distribution of assets:
- How long you were married
- The earning potential each of you possesses
- The level of education each of you possesses
- The level of involvement each of you had in creating and running the business in question
These and other factors will guide how your assets—including your business—will be divided in your divorce. The courts aim to effect a fair distribution of assets, which does not necessarily translate to splitting everything down the middle.
If You’re Dividing a Business in a Divorce, You Need an Experienced Connecticut Divorce Lawyer Today
Divorce is complicated, and owning a business together makes it that much more complicated. The dedicated legal team at The Law Offices of Piazza, Simmons & Grant, L.L.C., in Stamford, Connecticut, is here to help you protect your assets and to fight for a divorce settlement that works for you. To schedule a free consultation with one of our family law attorneys, contact or call us at (203) 348-2465 today.