As a business owner or a spouse of a business owner going through a divorce, your biggest question is likely, “What will happen to my business in a divorce?” The answer to this question can be complex, as dividing business interests in a divorce will depend on several factors. It takes comprehensive and diligent work to accurately determine business ownership interests for possible division in a divorce. Our divorce attorney for business owners has experience valuing and dividing business interests in a divorce. We can recommend qualified business valuation experts within our trusted referral network when needed.
For a business owner, divorce leads to a lot of uncertainty, worry, and questions. How do I protect my business in a divorce? Is my spouse entitled to half of my business if we divorce? The Cossitt Law Firm is ready to answer your questions and to explain all of your options. We will take the steps necessary to protect your business interests. We will work tirelessly to try to give you the outcome you desire. Call our divorce attorney for business owners today for a review of your situation at 970-488-1887.
If you spent several years or longer building the value of your business, working long hours, and making many sacrifices, you do not want to see that work destroyed by a divorce settlement that leaves you with no choice but to sell your business. This is your legacy, as well as your livelihood, and you should do everything possible to try to keep it intact after the divorce’s finalization.
At The Cossitt Law Firm, we have a reputation for giving those going through a divorce in the Fort Collins or Greeley areas the highest level of representation. We know what is at stake when we take on the challenge of trying to protect your business in the divorce. We know how to apply Colorado divorce laws to take every step possible to protect your business’s value and integrity. You deserve the highest level of representation when your life’s work is on the line.
One of the most important aspects of dealing with a business during divorce proceedings is determining the valuation of the business. Trying to calculate what kind of settlement you and your spouse will have regarding the business will depend in large part on the value of the business.
If you believe your business is worth $1 million, but your spouse’s representatives try to claim it is worth $2 million, the potential effect on the divorce negotiations will be significant. To help you receive the fairest potential agreement regarding your business, it is vital to have an accurate valuation. The Cossitt Law Firm knows how to consult with experts who can give us the most accurate and trustworthy estimate of the value of your business. We then will use these facts from the experts to show why your spouse’s estimate of the business value is incorrect.
If you and your spouse started the business during the marriage, but your spouse primarily operated the business, your spouse may have a greater knowledge of the financial workings of the business. This may allow your spouse to try to hide income or inventory to reduce the value of the business, affecting the way the property division occurs in the divorce.
Our team of divorce lawyers will demand accurate financial records for the business. We will not allow your spouse to submit inaccurate or incomplete financial records that could leave you receiving an unfair financial judgment. You deserve to receive a fair settlement in the divorce. We will make sure your spouse’s business valuation estimate has facts and documentation behind it.
When going through a difficult divorce, your spouse may exaggerate or outright lie about the origins of your business, about the profitability of the business, or about why you deserve blame for the divorce. You can be confident that we will counteract any of these lies and exaggerations with the facts. We do not let the emotions of the divorce affect our ability to give you the best possible representation.
For example, if your spouse’s representatives try to derail the negotiations over the settlement of the business by accusing you of infidelity or other improper behavior during the marriage, we will stick to the facts to keep the negotiations moving forward. Colorado Statute Title 14 spells out that Colorado is a no-fault state when it comes to divorce, meaning the judge cannot use property division or the division of the business as a way to “punish” one spouse for adultery. We will ensure that you receive the benefit you deserve under the law.
We are ready to begin working on the business settlement in your divorce as soon as you choose to hire us. Call our divorce attorney for business owners at 970-488-1887 today to discuss your options.
If you own a business in a highly competitive industry, you may not want certain pieces of financial information about your business to become public knowledge in court during a divorce hearing. Not only are you trying to protect your business from a devastating split in the divorce, but you also may want to protect key information from ending up in the hands of competitors.
Our divorce attorney for business owners has numerous techniques we potentially can deploy in your case to help you maintain your privacy throughout the entirety of the divorce process, protecting information about your business.
Hiring our divorce attorney gives many of our clients’ peace of mind that they will receive the best possible representation. However, simply choosing The Cossitt Law Firm isn’t the end of the process. Clients continually have questions for us throughout the case, and we take pride in our responsiveness. Some common questions that clients have for our divorce attorney for business owners are as follows. Read through our answers to learn more about how we handle these kinds of cases.
The process when you own a business and end up in a divorce depends on whether the business consists of marital property or separate property, as defined in Colorado statute § 14-10-113. If one spouse owned the business before the marriage occurred, that spouse should be able to keep the business, as it receives treatment as separate property. If the couple acquired or started the business during the marriage, it fits under the definition of marital property, meaning an even split is likely. Our property division lawyer can help you determine the classification of the business while we attempt to protect your assets.
When wondering how the dividing of a business in a divorce happens, understand that a couple of options typically are available. If the business is marital property, the two spouses will either need to continue to own the business together, or one spouse will need to buy out the other spouse by giving the other spouse financial considerations equal to half the value of the business. This could be cash, or it could be other assets from the marriage, such as a vehicle or jewelry. Even if the business fits the definition of separate property, and one spouse can keep the business alone, any appreciation in the value of the business that occurred during the marriage becomes marital property. The spouse keeping the business would need to give the other spouse financial considerations equal to half of the appreciation of the value of the business during the time of the marriage.
No one goes into a marriage expecting to need to divorce a few years later. Unfortunately, though, divorce is a possibility. Consequently, before entering the marriage, you may want to consider putting together a prenuptial agreement that protects your business and the increased value of the business in case of divorce. Having prenuptial agreements in place are helpful in high net worth divorces, such as often occur with a business on the line. If you do not have a prenuptial agreement in place at the time of the marriage ceremony, you do have the option of adding a postnuptial agreement at any time. Additionally, by tracking the finances of the business so that they are completely separate from the couple’s personal finances, it becomes easier to protect the business’s finances in the divorce.
Your spouse potentially could receive half of the value of the business in a divorce. However, it depends on the circumstances around the formation of the business. If you owned the business prior to the marriage, it remains yours after the divorce, receiving classification as separate property. However, your spouse could receive half of any appreciated value the business enjoyed during the marriage. If you started the business after marrying, your spouse could receive half of the value of the business in the divorce. You may have to sell the business, splitting the proceeds with your ex-spouse, or you may have to give your spouse half of the value of the business through other financial assets you own or receive in the divorce.
Our divorce lawyers for business owners in Fort Collins have experience with valuing and dividing business interests when business owners divorce.
First, we must identify the business interest, or ownership. Most businesses operate as a partnership or LLC, but they also can have a classification as DBA. The classification of the business may impact any form of division arising from a divorce.
Second, it is important to determine whether this business interest is a marital interest, premarital interest, or separate interest. If you owned the business prior to the marriage, then it should be separate property when dividing the business interest in a divorce in Colorado.
Ensuring any retained experts are properly licensed is critical in determining an accurate valuation. Licensing requirements for Colorado real estate appraisers are available at the Department of Regulatory Agencies. Verify other professional licenses through the Colorado license lookup service.
Some of the factors our divorce attorney for business owners will consider when trying to determine the value of a business ownership interest when a business owner divorces include:
Finally, the determination of the equitable division of business interest, along with all of the other marital property, needs to occur. This equitable division depends on many factors, such as who contributed to the acquisition of the business interest, the participation levels of parties in the business, as well as the economic circumstances of the parties. High net worth individuals often have multiple business interests to divide when divorcing, which further complicates the process. But our attorneys for divorces with a business are ready for the challenge.
At The Cossitt Law Firm, we are ready to start working on your case immediately. We know how to protect your financial interests, including protecting your right to the ownership of the business that you deserve. Our past clients know how hard we worked for them, and we are ready to do the same for you. Call our Greeley and Fort Collins divorce lawyers for business owners as soon as possible at 970-488-1887 for a case review.
If you have decided to get a divorce, the next steps can seem daunting. Here we provide a few answers to common questions about filing for divorce.
Depending on your family, financial, and personal circumstances there are many factors you will want to consider when filing for divorce. Find out what type of divorce is right for you.
How long will it take for the Court to issue a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage? The earliest a Colorado court could issues the divorce decree is 91 days after the petition was filed. However it can take longer than 91 days, as expert valuations and reports may be needed.
How can a divorce attorney help with an uncontested divorce? Uncontested divorce generally means the parties have agreed upon all issues, or they believe they will be able to easily agree on all issues. A divorce attorney can help with an uncontested divorce by ensuring everything drafted properly.
What are mandatory financial disclosures? Financial disclosures are required of both parties in every divorce case, within the first 45 days after the petition has been filed. The exchange of mandatory financial disclosures is intended to put each party on a level playing field as it relates to the finances of the divorce.
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