If you are going through a divorce, you already realize the impact that it has on every aspect of your personal life. However, there can also be ramifications to your business. Business owners in Missoula and throughout Montana should educate themselves on how a divorce can affect their company as well.
Montana is an equitable distribution state, which means the court will divide marital property on the basis of what it deems to be fair. That means that even if your spouse had nothing to do with your business, he or she may receive a portion of the company.
In cases where a former spouse receives an ownership stake in the business, daily operations can be greatly impacted. For entrepreneurs who ran their business themselves for years, having to adjust to their ex being an owner can be trying. You may be forced to adjust to not being the sole decision maker within the company you started.
What can you do?
Depending on how nasty your divorce gets, you may find yourself forced to work beside your former spouse every day. However, there are legal options that you can take to protect your business, and in turn, yourself, such as the following
- Place the business in a trust
- Pay yourself a fair salary so there is less money to distribute after a divorce
- Consider a postnuptial agreement that deals with the issue
If you are a business owner who is facing a divorce, you might find it advisable to sit down with an experienced family law attorney. Legal counsel can often outline some proactive moves that can ameliorate what could otherwise be a disruption to your livelihood.