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St. Clair Shores Divorce for Business Owners

St. Clair Shores Divorce for Business Owners

In Michigan divorce cases, each spouse is entitled to an equitable distribution of assets rather than an exactly equal split. Still, when the marital estate includes interests in a business, there are complex legal issues that can be further complicated by emotion of the spouses. In a fiercely contested dispute over business interests, you need a St. Clair Shores divorce attorney that will protect your rights and livelihood.

The lawyers at Iafrate & Salassa, P.C. have represented many clients in complex Michigan divorce matters, including business owners seeking to protect one of their most valued assets. Even though a divorce may require dividing up your company, the law still incorporates principles of equity. Our attorneys have the comprehensive legal background to advise you on your rights and help you understand the law, so you can make informed decisions. We will highlight the benefits of agreement on business interests in a divorce case, but will take the matter to court if necessary.

Skilled, Experienced Representation in Complex Divorce Matters

Ownership of a closely held company is unique in a divorce setting, but the initial inquiry at the outset is the same: Determining whether the business interest is marital or non-marital, as marital property is subject to equitable division under Michigan law. When the distinction isn’t clear-cut, our attorneys apply their in-depth knowledge to ensure your company ownership falls within the proper category. For marital business interests subject to distribution between spouses, the lawyers at Iafrate & Salassa, P.C. will assist with:

  • Establishing Fair Market Value of the Company: It’s common for one spouse to buy out the other’s ownership, but it’s first necessary to determine the fair market value of the company. There are different approaches for establishing the value, and a lawyer can advise you on the valuation method that makes the most sense in your case. Options include:
    • Market Method, which assesses companies in your industry that are similarly situated to determine the value of your own organization; and,
    • Income Method, which evaluates cash flow over a designated period of time and applies it to extrapolate future value.

Determining fair market value under either of these methods is a highly technical process. In most cases, you will need the assistance of a financial professional. An accounting expert can also help establish the value of goodwill and reputation, which carries considerable weight in a business valuation.

  • Buyout Agreements: After establishing the value of the business, you must formalize an agreement to transition the company interest from one spouse to the other. Whether you’re on the purchasing or selling side, it’s essential to have an attorney to help with drafting and execution. Mistakes are costly and can result in a transaction that’s not legally binding.

Talk to Our Michigan Attorneys About Divorce for Business Owners

At Iafrate & Salassa, P.C., our complex divorce practice group has amassed nearly five decades of combined experience in Michigan divorce matters. We have the skills and comprehensive legal background to safeguard your rights as a business owner going through the dissolution of marriage process. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, please contact our St. Clair Shores offices right away to discuss your case. You can reach us by phone at (586) 263-1600 or send an email to set up an appointment with a lawyer.

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