What happens to a family business when the owners divorce?

A family business is likely a source of pride for the owners. It’s tangible proof of their hard work and dedication to a joint venture. While this is a positive thing, there are some challenges that can come if the couple decides that they need to divorce

If you’re in this position with your spouse, it’s better to think about the decision you need to make for the business as soon as possible.

Options for a company after owners divorce

There are a few options that are possible when this situation happens. Considering the unique circumstances of the company may help you to determine which of these are viable and should be carefully considered:

  • Sell the company to new owners
  • One owner buys the other out
  • Close the business
  • Continue to run the company as a team

You and your ex will have to work together to determine what will happen to the company. Mediation may help. 

Telling the employees should be handled in a timely manner

If the company has employees, you will have to tell them what’s going to happen. It’s a good idea to have a firm plan to share with them before you tell them. Provide them the information they need to know but be careful not to make promises that you won’t be able to keep. 

Even if you continue to run the company as a team, there will likely be changes that need to be made. Outlining what each person is responsible for can help to ensure that there isn’t any overstepping of boundaries in the future. 

Protect your interests in a complex divorce

No matter what option is going to happen with your business, you need to ensure that you have the terms of everything in writing. Your attorney can help you to ensure that your interests are protected so you have the property division settlement you deserve.