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Protecting your personal business from divorce

As you prepare for your marriage in Rockville, the last thing you want to consider is what might happen were you to divorce. Many of those that come seeking the help of the team here at Steven J. Gaba were convinced their marriages would last forever, yet later found themselves in positions where they felt divorce was best for all involved. If you were ever to arrive at such a situation, consider the assets you have spent a lifetime developing (particularly your personal business). Ask yourself if you would want to continue having your spouse as your business partner even after your personal relationship has failed. 

In most cases, the answer to that question would be no. Yet according to Section 8-201 of Maryland’s Family Law statutes, any assets acquired by you and/or your spouse during your marriage are deemed to be marital property. Even if you established your company prior to your marriage, those business assets earned during your union are considered to be shared. 

How, then, are you to avoid having him or her walk away with a significant portion of your business assets if you were to divorce? Here are a few suggestions: 

  • Establish a prenuptial agreement: Maintaining all of your business assets as separate property in a prenup ensures that they will be yours if you divorce. 
  • Pay yourself a good salary: Putting all of your money back into your business may give your spouse grounds to say he or she never personally profited from your business. 
  • Be prepared to relinquish other assets: Being open to giving up your claim to other assets (such as your marital home) may prompt your spouse to forgo any claim of ownership of your company. 

More information on  protecting your personal assets can be found here on our site. 

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