Dallas Business Owner Attorneys
Helping Business Owners Navigate Family Law Cases
Divorce is always difficult for everyone involved, but it can be much more complicated when one or both spouses own a business.
At Verner Brumley Mueller Parker PC, our Dallas business owner lawyers understand how courts deal with businesses during the divorce process. We'll work with you to safeguard your livelihood and work toward an optimal outcome in your case.
Understanding Business Ownership During a Divorce
Your business is probably the most important asset you own. However, issues arise when it comes to the division of property.
Self-employed professionals typically own a personal service practice that often has very little to sell. The biggest problem is that aside from certain office assets, one cannot divide and sell a reputation.
Compensation is another area not always clearly defined as a business owner. For instance, you cannot commingle a salary and accounts payable–a calculation must defer to one or the other. The issue can be further complicated with shareholder loans, buy-sell agreements, or any partnership arguments.
After all of these things are taken into account, depreciation, and other tax issues have to be considered.
As you can see, business ownership during a divorce can be complicated. Let's quickly cover how courts often handle business during a divorce in Texas.
How Does Property Division Impact Businesses in TX?
Before a business can be divided in a divorce, it must be accurately valued. This is a crucial step, but it is not necessarily an easy one.
Generally, both parties that have a stake in the business (assuming the court considers it or some aspects of it community property) hire a financial professional specializing in asset valuation. Those individuals come up with a quote for the value of the business. The parties then meet and agree on the business' value.
After agreeing on a value for the business, parties can often choose to handle asset division in one of the following ways:
- One party (typically the one with more assets or more of a stake in the business) buys the other out and continues owning the enterprise;
- The parties continue running the business as co-owners;
- The parties sell the business and equitable divide the profits;
- The parties split the business into two separate entities;
- The parties dissolve the business entirely.
Because Texas is a community property state, courts often consider some aspect(s) of a business, such as the revenue it generates during a marriage, community property - even if one party holds vastly more stake than the other. As a result, business owners often unexpectedly find themselves entangled in property division disputes.
At Verner Brumley Mueller Parker, we fight for your company's survival and future prosperity. We can address any number of complex issues that may arise, such as:
- Multiple owners
- Community vs. Separate Property Concerns
- Shareholder loans
- Shareholder or partnership issues
- Buy-sell agreements
When dealing with something as personal as a business, you want to ensure your decisions are well thought out. During the heat of divorce, it can be challenging to think straight. Let our Dallas business owner attorneys work with you to safeguard the enterprise you've worked so hard to build.