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Deciding What to Do with a Family Business During a Florida Divorce


When Florida couples own a business together, there is often significant conflict in deciding who will get the business during the property division in the case of a divorce. However, there are some situations where divorced couples decide to continue owning the business together, and even working together in some cases.

Dividing a business or choosing to work together once your divorce is final is a complex issue to resolve. You need a skilled Boca Raton complex divorce attorney on your side who can protect your rights and help you obtain the best outcome possible.

Will a Florida Judge Require Spouses to Remain Business Partners?

Despite what you hear or see on television, you and your soon-to-be-ex will not be required to continue operating as business partners unless it is your own choice. Dividing a family-owned business is a common situation our team of Boca Raton family law attorneys at the Law Offices of Schwartz| White see in many Florida divorces.

Valuing a Business in a Divorce

If couples opt to sell the business or distribute it in the divorce, there has to be an accurate valuation of the company. That is often the hardest part of dividing a business in the divorce. There are ways that your attorney can help with this. One of these is hiring an expert, like a forensic accountant, who can determine an appropriate value.

When choosing the end the business arrangement, one way is to have one spouse buy out the other spouse’s interest in the business. Another option is to create an installment plan for a buyout. This allows you or your spouse to make payments to the other so the purchasing spouse can afford to purchase the business if they don’t have the full amount up front.

Some couples make the agreement to sell the business outright and divide the proceeds once the business sells.

Choosing to Work Together After Your Divorce

If you choose to keep your business and try to work together after the divorce, it’s not impossible to keep it active and profitable. First, you need to make sure that you maintain respect for each other. You have to separate the emotions and anger that may be attached to your divorce and look at your ex purely in a professional capacity. Someone can be a lousy spouse, but they can be a great business manager.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You may need to seek professional help to deal with the marriage falling apart and learning to work together or find what roles are right for your business. This is where creating an agreement can help as well. If your business is a partnership, there should be a valid partnership agreement in place, which can help reduce conflict. This is an important step in any partnership, whether the owners are married or not.

Lastly, make sure you talk to your employees. Be upfront about the split and reassure them. Don’t put them in a position to pick sides and have conflict at work, which can reduce productivity.

Contact a Boca Raton Divorce Attorney

If you have questions regarding business valuation and how to handle marital property distribution during your Florida divorce, it’s important to speak with a knowledgeable Boca Raton family law attorney. Contact the Law Offices of Schwartz | White today to schedule an initial consultation.

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