Jamie Graham & Associates, PLLC

Protecting family business from divorce is possible

An important part of business ownership in Texas is tracking variables related to risk, such as supply costs or new competitors. However, one of the greatest threats to the success of a business is divorce. This is why prenuptial agreements may be especially helpful prior to getting married and running a business during the marriage.

A prenuptial agreement is a legal document created and signed prior to marriage that specifies what will happen to a business that was started before the marriage if divorce occurs. If a prenuptial agreement is done correctly, it can be considered ironclad. This means it will negate even the laws related to property division in Texas, which is a community property state. In a community property state, the court splits community property -- or marital property -- 50/50 during the dissolution of a marriage.

A prenuptial agreement requires that both spouses offer full disclosure, and it cannot be unconscionable. It must also be written as well as signed voluntarily in front of witnesses. Using a prenuptial agreement to protect a business is critical since a family business is oftentimes two divorcing spouses' greatest assets.

If no prenuptial agreement exists and divorce papers have already been filed in Texas, it is still possible to try to protect one's best interests during this type of family law proceeding. Divorce negotiation or mediation are alternatives to divorce litigation that may lead to a settlement that both parties find satisfactory. These alternative processes offer the benefit of being less stressful and costly than going to trial to resolve divorce-related issues.

Source: marketwatch.com, "How to protect your family business during a divorce", Daniel Thompson, Feb. 10, 2017

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At Jamie Graham & Associates, PLLC, we have received a variety of honors and awards for our family law services. Members of our team have been listed as Top Lawyers in San Antonio Scene magazine. We take pride in the number of positive reviews we have received from satisfied clients. On AVVO, a lawyer rating website, we have received an 8.9 rating overall and many positive ratings from clients and colleagues.

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