Maybe it was the shared dreams, the desire to pursue them and drive to achieve them that brought you together. While marriage is often compared to a business agreement, as two individuals are legally united, making promises to one another to keep this union working, but the tough reality is that not all marriages succeed. When a business is involved in your marital relationship, it can also feel like the business is also ending. The decision to divorce may be based on your desire to end a relationship with your partner; however, this decision could also impact your business and the relationship you have with your business partner, which is your former spouse.
While there are many ways a divorce could impact a business, there are three major effects to be aware of. To begin, it could disrupt the day-to-day operations. This may be due to the immediate changes caused by the filing, such as each spouse ensuring they do not cross paths, or it could be a result of all the appearances, scheduling and document gathering related to the divorce that keeps each spouse away from the business.
Next, a divorce could impact business partners and employees. In matters where one spouse is a partner of a business, this could result in his or her interest in the business being subject to division during a divorce. Thus, it is important to consider the impact on your business partners if you suddenly had a smaller stake in the company and your former spouse becomes an uninvited partner of the company.
In contrast, if both spouses are business partners, this may cause one spouse to leave the business because they cannot coexist, whether in a marriage or business. Additionally, both spouses may continue their roles in the business; however, this could impact the ability to run the business smoothly. In turn, this could impact the employees and the ability to maintain normal operations.
Finally, divorce could be the result of a business being dissolved. When spouses are equal partners in a business and they cannot maintain the business together or buy out the other spouse, dissolving the business may be their only option.
The end of a marriage does not have to be the end of a business co-owned or co-operated by you and your former spouse. It is possible to successfully maintain a business, with our without your former spouse, despite your inability to make your marriage work. Navigating this process can be complex, overwhelming and emotional; however, it is important to understand what legal rights and options you have so you can move forward with your divorce well informed and armed with the information that could better your business.