Asset division can be a contentious issue in a divorce. If you are angry with each other you might set out to get as much as possible without due regard for the other person’s needs or wishes. Or you might intentionally set out to get something that you know will upset them.
If your spouse owns a business, that may be a top target for you. However, before you set your sights on a share of your spouse’s business, stop and think if this is really beneficial to you.
First, you need to understand if you even have a right to it. If you signed a pre or postnuptial agreement, you may have already given up your claim.
What if you did not sign any agreement?
It may be better for you and your spouse if you let them keep 100 % of their company. Here is why:
- It reduces the amount you need to deal with each other: However minimal your role in the business, it will involve some contact which can be hard after a divorce.
- It takes away a potential source of conflict: As co-parents, you need to try hard to maintain a working relationship for the benefit of your child. Arguments over business decisions could make that much harder and spill over into your co-parent relationship.
- Monies they give you may depend on their income: If they pay you child support or spousal support, a court will take their income into account. If their business goes badly, they may apply for a reduction. If they are unhappy about sharing with you, they may put less effort into the business or purposefully try to destroy it to avoid having to pass you so much money.
Not pursuing a percentage of your spouse’s company also leaves you free to pursue a greater share of other assets, ones that come with fewer complications. Having help to understand your rights and options will be crucial to getting a satisfactory outcome when dividing assets in a divorce.