The Census Bureau estimates that married couples own around 3.7 million businesses across the country. With the divorce rate currently hovering between 40 and 50 percent, a lot of divorced business partners are left wondering whether the business can survive the end of marriage. Do ex-spouses that own a business together divorce their business partnership as well? Many couples who find themselves on the other side of divorce with their businesses still intact, say not necessarily.
Ultimately, without respect, no relationship can survive. Whether it is a parent-child relationship, a friendship, a romance, or a working partnership, both parties must respect each other to thrive. Particularly in marriages where there are no major transgressions such as infidelity or abuse, there is a chance that business partnerships can continue.
Some spouses grow apart over time, but still love and respect one another. If their professional goals remain unchanged, they may be able to move forward in business together. Once divorced spouses are in a healthy place of acceptance about the end of their romantic bond, they can accept their ex-spouse as a professional peer and continue to grow the business they have built. In more acrimonious separations where respect has been lost, maintaining a business may not be feasible.
Divorced couples that choose to stay in business together may benefit from the guidance of a therapist. A therapist is an invaluable tool in helping couples communicate as business partners focused on work, rather than being distracted by their romantic history.
One couple, who run an accounting firm based in Toronto, turned to Imago Relationship Therapy (IMAGO) to help them communicate effectively. IMAGO is a type of relationship therapy aimed at confronting partnership patterns that mimic childhood relationships. IMAGO’s premise is that by recognizing these patterns, they can break through them, learning to relate to others on a deeper, more authentic level. IMAGO helped the Toronto couple talk without yelling and helped them replace anger with compassion, allowing them to remain business partners well after the marriage was over.
Even happily married couples should cement a legal partnership agreement to protect themselves and their business in the event of divorce. Spouses owning a business together should consult a Media divorce law firm to create a legal agreement establishing what happens to one partner’s position or assets. Much like a prenuptial agreement, a business partnership protects both parties and ultimately ensures the stability of the business after divorce. A business partnership can protect the jobs of both spouses in the event of divorce, and specifies how assets will be divided should one spouse opt to leave the business.
With respect and healthy communication, a solid business partnership can withstand divorce. Media divorce lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. will create a sound business partnership agreement to protect the interests of spouses and entrepreneurs. With the counsel of a skilled Media divorce lawyer, you do not have to lose the business you have worked hard to build. Call the Media, Pennsylvania office at 610-565-3700 or use the simple online contact form to schedule a free consultation. Eckell Sparks offers a second location in West Chester, Pennsylvania to serve clients throughout the state.