For the vast majority of couples in America, the family home serves as the single biggest asset. However, for business owners, the business will represent the biggest asset they own instead.
Divorce still impacts family businesses, of course. It is important to understand what options you have in order to pick the best one for you.
Continuing to Co-run the Business
The American Bar Association discusses options for a private business during a divorce. In most cases, you will have three options. First, you can continue running the business as co-owners. You can both retain interest in the company and you do not need to go through the steps of getting your business appraised. This option works best for couples who strongly believe they can continue to work together even after the divorce. Otherwise, too many arguments could tear your business apart.
Buying Out Your Spouse
You can buy out your spouse. As co-owners, you share rights and responsibilities. If you want to buy out your spouse’s share, you first need to hire an appraiser to can place a valuation on your business. This will allow you to choose a fair selling price. You may also work out an exchange of assets that your co-owner finds agreeable if you do not have the finances to buy their share directly.
Listing the Business
Finally, you can list the business. You can sell it outright and split the profits after an appraiser gives the value of the business. Of course, you must still work together until the business sells, which some couples may find too daunting.
Each option has its own potential drawbacks and benefits. It is up to you to decide which serves your needs.