Protecting a Business in a Divorce

Illinois divorce attorney, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois child support lawyer,There were an estimated 27.9 small businesses in the United States in 2010. Owning a business can be a very rewarding and fulfilling experience, but it can also be scary if you get a divorce. Typically in Illinois divorces, the two spouses must split their assets according to Illinois’ equitable division guidelines. This does not necessarily mean that each spouse will get half of the marital assets, but it does mean that the judge will determine what is equitable. The only things that are subject to division are those that are considered marital property. Your business may or may not be considered marital property and figuring that out is your first step in protecting your business from your spouse. Here are a few ways you can protect your business and keep it in your control during your divorce:

Get Your Business Valued

One of the first things you will want to do is to find out how much your business is worth. This can be accomplished by using a court-appointed valuation expert who is required to be unbiased when coming up with a value to assign to your business. It is still a good idea to hire an outside valuation specialist to make sure your result is in line with the court’s result.

Phase Your Spouse Out

If your spouse works for your company, it is crucial that you begin to phase your spouse out of the business as soon as possible. If your spouse can make the case that he or she contributed to the success of the business, a judge might determine that your spouse is entitled to a portion of the business’s profits.

Give Yourself a Generous Salary

Do not try to invest all of your business’s profits back into the business. Though this may seem like a good business practice, your spouse may be able to make the case that you did not put enough of the profits into the household and that he or she is entitled to more. Pay yourself a decent salary to try to avoid this.

Try Negotiating with Other Assets

As a last resort, if you find that you owe your spouse a portion of the business or the profits, try negotiating with other assets that you two own. Offer your spouse the family home, the heirloom jewelry or even your vacation home as a way of “paying off” your spouse so that you can keep more of the business.

Hire an Aurora, IL High-Value Asset Division Attorney

Your business is probably one of the most valuable — if not the most valuable — assets that you own. If you are getting a divorce, it is reasonable to worry about what will happen to your business. At the Law Office of Matthew M. Williams, P.C., we can help you try to protect your business at all costs. Our skilled high-value asset division lawyer will inform you of your ownership rights to your business and your options if your business is subject to division. Call our office today at 630-409-8184 to schedule a consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.nfib.com/content/resources/legal/a-small-business-owners-guide-to-divorce/

https://www.inc.com/guides/2010/05/protecting-your-business-from-divorce.html

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/220124

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