Everyone knows the stress that often goes along with operating a small business. Divorce can complicate an already challenging situation; wasting time, money and energy while the future of the business you worked so hard to create hangs in the balance. For some advice on steps you can take to protect your small business during a divorce, keep reading.
The number one bit of advice for small business owners is to draft and sign a prenuptial agreement. Before the wedding ever occurs, sit down with an experienced South Carolina family law attorney and create an agreement that reflects your wishes with regard to the business. Clarify who will get what in the event that the marriage unravels, something that can greatly reduce uncertainty during the divorce.
Keep the Money Separate
Experts uniformly agree that if you own a small business, it is crucial to keep your business and personal finances as separate as possible. That means no joint bank accounts and no commingling of funds. Taking payments from a client and depositing them into the family checking account is a good way to muddy the waters with regard to the business, making it easier for your spouse to claim a share of the company down the road if you ever divorce.
Keep Your Spouse Away
Though it may seem obvious in retrospect, small business owners getting divorced find themselves with headaches after bringing their spouse into the company, often in an attempt to find cheap help. The problem is that doing so makes it much easier for the spouse to claim that he/she deserves a share of the business or its continuing profits in the event of a divorce. Though it might be lead to some disagreements during the marriage, you are better off when you draw clear boundaries between your spouse and your business.
Source: “10 Rules All Entrepreneurs Must Follow to Divorce-Proof Their Business Financially,” by Zach Schleien, published at Tech.co.