A business owner in Florida who goes through a divorce might have to give an ex-spouse partial control of the enterprise. A divorce could even lead to the loss of the company. However, there are steps a person can take to reduce the likelihood that his or her business will be affected in a divorce.
One way to do this is with a prenuptial agreement. It can state that the business is to be considered separate property in the event of a divorce. However, there may be circumstances in which the company owner wants his or her spouse to get something from the business if they divorce. In this case, the prenup could state what percentage the spouse will receive. The advantage of putting this information in a prenup is that it allows a couple to negotiate when they are not dealing with the stress of divorce. If they are already married, they can create a postnuptial agreement.
However, some people are resistant to pre- or postnuptial agreements. Even with these agreements in place, it can still be a good idea to use the organizing documentation for the business to establish that it is separate property. Keeping good financial records can make it easier to separate the business from personal and marital expenses and determine what the company is worth.
A prenuptial agreement is not always a guarantee against a contentious divorce. If one spouse signed it without sufficient legal counsel, for example, the agreement could be dismissed. Furthermore, there are other issues that could surface to make a high-asset divorce complicated. For example, one spouse might attempt to hide assets. While some divorces may require litigation to produce a settlement, this is not inevitable even in contentious divorces. Couples may be able to resolve their conflict and reach an agreement out of court using mediation.