When you own a business, you likely have put considerable time and effort into it. As such, doing everything you can to protect your business and the hard work you’ve put into it when going through a high net worth divorce is vital. These divorces can be incredibly complex and contentious due to the high value of the assets involved. The following blog explores what you must know about these circumstances and how Los Angeles high net worth divorce attorneys with experience handling these complex assets can help you navigate these challenging times.
How Can a High Net Worth Divorce Impact My Company?
When going through a divorce in California, it’s essential to understand how assets are divided. Generally, any asset deemed marital property, which is property acquired during the marriage, is subject to the state’s community property laws. As such, this means each spouse is entitled to an even 50-50 split of the assets.
As such, if your business was founded prior to your marriage and you kept it entirely separate by using your own funds and keeping your spouse out of the business, you may be able to retain it.
However, if you founded the company during your marriage, your spouse became an employee or investor in the company, or used martial funds to invest in your business, it can be deemed marital property. As such, your spouse is entitled to half of the company.
What Can I Do to Protect My Business?
If you are worried about what will happen to your company if you and your spouse divorce before you marry, you can create a prenuptial agreement that details the division of your assets in the event you separate. However, if you are already married, you still have options to shield your company from your divorce.
One option is to compromise. You may be able to offer your spouse other assets in exchange for retaining full ownership in the company. Additionally, you may be able to “buy out” your spouse’s share in the business when it is divided during divorce.
Another option would be to place your business in a trust fund. Doing so removes ownership of the company, as you have transferred it to ownership of the trust. As such, it is not deemed marital property, thus it is not subject to community property laws during a divorce.
How Can a Riverside County, California Attorney Assist Me?
When you are going through a divorce and have assets on the line, it’s critical to understand that you must enlist the assistance of an attorney if you want the best chance at protecting your assets. Unfortunately, this is a complex legal issue, and trying to navigate it on your own can negatively impact your business.
At the Zitser Family Law Group, our team has experience handling high net worth divorces and complex assets, so you can rest assured your business is in good hands. We’ll work with you to help you navigate this process and explore all possible avenues to help you achieve the best possible outcome for your circumstances. Contact us today to learn more.