When business divorce gets personal

By Nina Kaufman, Esq.

Marisa sat at the dimly-lit bar, a chilled glass of Chardonnay in front of her. She drank deeply. It had been a rough day. She needed a break. Her business partner, Alejandro, had made a mess of things again. Failed to meet his promised sales targets. “Was too busy” to send out responses to RFPs. And racked up a bunch of personal expenses on the company AMEX. Again.

She nodded at the bartender, who refilled her glass. What saddened Marisa was how much she had come to despise Alejandro. Lost respect for him—not just as a business partner, but as a person. To the point where she just couldn’t stand being in the same room with him.

She had to get out of this. Had to get him out. She mulled over the options. She could fire him. Buy him out. But she still had to go to bed with him every night. And she wasn’t sure she wanted to do that anymore, either.

For Alejandro wasn’t just her business partner. He was her husband.

What a mess!

I’ve dealt with “business divorces.” They’re rarely pretty. But when the business—like a child—is in the middle of a divorce, that’s a whole lotta ugly. Part of the pot of marital “spoils” that needs to be divided up … equitably.

Relationships are a living organism,” says Sherri Donovan, Esq., award-winning matrimonial and family law attorney based in NYC. “And when a crisis arises, you need to know your options.”

How can business owners keep what they’ve worked so hard to build?

Listen in as I interview Sherri Donovan., Esq., multiple award-winning family law attorney and mediator as we look at ways to protect your back side (and your business) from the ravages of separation and divorce. This can happen if:

  • You own the business with your spouse/or partner–do you get to keep it?
  • You’ve owned a business by yourself for a while and then get married–will your prenup help you?

AND (because I’m curious)

  • How can you avoid blowback where your spouse owns a business and you’re not involved?

Be sure to post a comment below to let us know what you think!

About Sherri Donovan

Sherri Donovan is a matrimonial attorney, author, speaker and certified mediator. She was selected as one of the Top 10 Family Law Attorneys by the National Academy of Family Lawyers. Since 1988, Ms. Donovan has owned Sherri Donovan and Associates, P.C., a matrimonial and family law firm that focuses on divorce, custody, child support and maintenance, domestic partnerships and pre-nuptials. She is nimble at mediation, collaborative negotiations and litigation. Ms. Donovan is a cum laude graduate of New York Law School, lecturing about divorce for audiences as diverse as the United Nations, Ameriprise Financial, the New York County Lawyers Association, MSNBC and CBS. Sherri is a member of the United States Supreme Court Bar, New York State Bar Association, Family Law Section, Matrimonial Committee of the Women’s Bar Association, Matrimonial Committee of the New York County Bar Association, New York City Bar Association and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.

For more information, visit www.sherridonovan.com.

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