When you started your business, you were optimistic for the future and looked forward to what success for your business will look like. Years later, you are enjoying success and stability as a business owner, but you may be dealing with complications in your personal life. If divorce is on the horizon, you may wonder what this process would mean for your company.
It’s appropriate to start the process of protecting your interests and developing a strategy for approaching your business assets as soon as possible in a divorce. Preparing for what is ahead is a key component to securing a final order that is fair and reasonable for both parties. As you look ahead, it’s smart to resolve to handle your divorce with a focus on what will be best for the future — not necessarily what you feel like in the moment.
Things you can do now
Many Georgia business owners take steps to protect their interests by drafting a prenuptial agreement before they get married. Perhaps you did not think that was necessary at the time, or maybe you didn’t start your company until after you got married. If you do not have a prenuptial agreement, there are still things you can do to that may be beneficial if you move forward with divorce at any point in the future. Some of these things include:
- Take the appropriate legal steps to establish yourself as the primary owner of your business. You may want to review organizing documents to ensure they state that the business cannot transfer ownership in a divorce.
- Keep clear and organized financial records, and make sure to keep your business and personal finances separate. This can make it easier when it’s time to navigate the property division process.
- Carefully document all cash transactions, and be certain to look into whether you are paying yourself and your spouse, if he or she works for your business, a salary based on fair market value.
There is a chance that at least a portion of your business assets are marital assets, which means they are eligible for division between the two spouses in the event of a divorce. Whether you are planning to divorce soon or it may be a possibility down the road, it may help you to learn more about the steps you can take now to protect your business.
You may find it helpful to start with an assessment of your case with an attorney experienced in high asset and financially complex divorces. With the right guidance, a divorce does not have to compromise the future success of your small business.