Divorce for Business Owners

By its nature, divorce can be a difficult and messy experience. When ownership interest in a business is involved, it is event more complicated. If you are in business with your soon-to-be-ex-spouse or if you and your spouse have a community interest in a business, seeking legal representation is vital. Even if you do not share ownership on the title documents of the business at the time of divorce, this division may not be cut and dried. There can be a community interest in a separate property business in existence at the date of marriage. Coming to an amicable agreement in a complex situation can be extremely difficult, but it can mean the survival of your business and a great deal of money. It can also save both you and your employees a great deal of stress and anxiety.

When you own a business, the cost of litigation and impact of time lost can be very high. It is important that both parties put personal differences aside in order to preserve the asset. Preserving the asset is in the best interest of those who own the business and those who work there. Hiring a qualified divorce lawyer is highly important when it comes to splitting assets in this situation. Attorney Gloria Petroni is experienced in providing solutions to help you and your spouse preserve your resourced and resolve your divorce issues without going to trial.

Businesses are treated as an asset in a divorce. There are many ways to divide this type of asset depending on whether the business is community or separate property, or in some cases both. If the business was inherited or owned prior to marriage, it is likely to be a mixture of community and separate property. If the business is considered community property, one possible solution is to sell the business and divide the proceeds between the parties. This solution avoids the necessity of ascertaining the value of the business and divides the asset accordingly. However, businesses are rarely sold in a divorce. Selling a business is more difficult as compared to other assets and could potentially leave one or both spouses without work. Often one spouse will purchase the interest of the other through other community assets or through the use of a promissory note over time to purchase that business interest.

Under Nevada law, the court begins with the premise that a distribution of the assets and debts of the marriage should be equal barring any justification for deviation. Some possible reasons for an unequal distribution may include the desire of either party to retain an asset, including an interest in a business, whether it be a corporation or professional practice. If either party wishes for a business entity to remain intact and free of claim or interference by the other party, one possible course is to compensate the other spouse for his or her share of the business. For this reason having an attorney who understands business valuation in a divorce is important. Establishing the value of a business is complex and requires the assistance of a skilled attorney with experience in this area of community property distribution.

If a divorce involves ownership in a business, it is very likely the value of that business will need to be determined. The catch is that there are many ways to go about this, some methods being significantly more expensive than others. An experienced attorney who understands how to evaluate a business can guide both sides to resolution without trial and without going to the expense of having multiple valuations completed.  Gloria Petroni understands business. Gloria Petroni works with trusted and respected experts in the area through working on number of cases involving business valuations in family law cases. Gloria Petroni understands business valuation, discounts and goodwill and is an asset in these cases. This type of experience can be crucial in cases that require determination of the proper value of the family business, so that it can be split equitably or so one party may retain it with the other spouse then being awarded other assets in exchange.

Attorney Gloria Petroni will undertake a comprehensive case preparation effort in order to provide the best representation possible. It is important the true value of a business be determined and expressed as an ongoing enterprise and just as important that an attorney be fully prepared to defend this valuation in court if necessary.

Areas which will be reviewed in determining the value of the business will include:

  • The value of any hidden business assets and debts such as tax obligations, tax loss carry forwards and undervalued assets
  • The tax impacts of capital gains and losses
  • Areas such as the contributions of a spouse to the value of the business
  • Other assets and obligations

If your financial interests and future earnings are at stake in a divorce involving a business, it is critical that you retain an experienced divorce lawyer who can ensure the protection of your rights and obtain a result that will enable you to continue your business interests. Contact Reno business divorce lawyer at Gloria Petroni Law Group today at 775-420-4221.

At Petroni Law Group, our goal is to provide each and every client with an unobstructed view of all aspects of a case by aiding in informed decision-making and clear understanding of possible outcomes.

Contact Info
5470 Kietzke Lane, Suite 300
Reno, NV 89511