Many people in the greater Orlando area own their own businesses or a share in the family business.
Often, these people have a lot of their wealth wrapped up in these businesses and rely on the income from them to make a living.
Particularly when the business has been family-owned for many years or even generations, the owner may have strong emotional ties to the business.
These are reasons why it can be so difficult to divide a small business in a divorce.
Furthermore, unlike stocks in publicly traded companies, family-held businesses usually do not have a value that is easy to determine.
Usually, it will take a financial expert or even several experts to explain a private business’s value with reasonable accuracy.
A person’s interest in a small business may be marital property subject to division
Like other property, a Florida resident’s business interest may be subject to division in a divorce.
Whether and to what extent a business is marital property will depend on the divorcing couple’s unique circumstances such as the date of marriage and whether the couple signed a prenuptial agreement.
Florida business owners and their spouses alike should be aware, however, that the court may still divide the business interest even if only one spouse has been involved with the business’s operations.
Assuming the couple can agree on the value of the business and a fair division of the value, there still may be practical problems with actually dividing up the business.
For example, the spouse who was more involved with the business may want to negotiate a buyout by trading other property or agreeing to pay the other spouse money.
Often, questions about how to go about actually unraveling a family business after a divorce may involve questions of both family law and business law.