Most couples who are going through a divorce in the state of Maryland will need to work through and decide how to divide any assets and property the couple has purchased during their marriage. The goal is that these assets are divided in a fair and equitable way. For example, if the couple has approximately $100,000 equity in the family home and another $100,000 in stocks, one spouse may get the house and the other spouse the stocks. But if the couple owns a business, the division of this asset is often more complex than dividing other assets. If you are going through a divorce and you and your spouse own a business, call Peerless Law to speak with a divorce lawyer Frederick, MD clients trust.
How the Process Works
One of the factors that can make dividing a business difficult is that the value of the business may fluctuate from one week to the next, depending on the nature of the business. There are other factors that the courts will look at when determining how the business should be divided.
The first factor the court will determine is whether or not the business is considered marital property. If one spouse started the business before the marriage, and all of the profits and any assets the business owns were kept entirely separate from other marital assets, the courts will probably deem the business as separate property and not part of the marital estate. In other words, the business is not an asset that needs to be distributed with other marital assets per the laws of the state of Maryland.
However, if the business was started during the couple’s marriage and assets from the business were in joint accounts or if any profits made from the business were used to pay marital debts and expenses, then the courts may deem the business as part of the marital estate and distribute per the laws of the state.
A Fredrick, MD divorce lawyer can evaluate your information and determine if the business owned by you and/or your spouse should be addressed in your divorce.
Determining the Value
If the business is determined to be part of the marital estate, the next step will be to determine its value. If both spouses agree to the value and the court agrees the amount is fair and reasonable, then there should not be any further action necessary. Unfortunately, it is not often that easy and each party usually disagrees on what the value of the business is. That means the court will have the final decision.
There are a few ways this may occur. The court may order a professional appraiser determine what the fair market value of the business is. The appraiser will include both the present dollar amount as well as include what the projected future income of the business will be, current capital and assets, and even the “goodwill” of the business, such as its reputation and/or the value of the name of the business.
Are You Going Through a Divorce?
To learn more about asset and property division and other issues that need to be decided in a divorce, contact Peeples Law to meet with a skilled Frederick, MD divorce lawyer. Call our office today.
How to Negotiate a Divorce Settlement Peacefully
When you are going through a divorce, you have to eventually come to agreements on many issues, such as property division, child custody, and spousal support. Here are a few tips for doing this peacefully.
Get Control of Your Emotions
Getting divorced is a stressful process and can cause you to feel a wide range of emotions. However, if you let your emotions get the best of you, your spouse and his or her lawyer may use that against you. They will learn what your triggers and put you at a disadvantage during the negotiation process. That is why you should try your best to maintain your composure and think rationally. If you need help getting control of your emotions, consider talking to a therapist.
Figure Out What Your Spouse Wants
In divorce negotiations, it is common for people to only focus on what they want. After all, why should they care about what their spouse wants? However, if you take the time to ask your spouse what he or she wants and be willing to compromise the process could go much smoother.
Provide All the Facts
In order to negotiate a fair settlement with your spouse, you have to give all the facts and vice versa. Don’t try to hide your assets, no matter how small you think they may be. If the court finds out, it could jeopardize your divorcde case. If you don’t believe your spouse is being truthful about assets, your divorce lawyer in Frederic, MD can hire an accountant to look into it.
Concentrate on the Problem
When you are going through a divorce, it is natural to feel some degree of sadness, bitterness or even anger towards your spouse. However, if you focus on all the ill feelings you have towards your spouse, it will just prolong the divorce process and make things more difficult on yourself. Instead, just focus on the problem at hand. For instance, if you have children, determine the best way to divide custody. This way, you can remain objective in your discussions and avoid making costly mistakes.
Communicate in a Respectful Manner
During divorce negotiations, you will have to communicate with your spouse. If the two of you are not on good terms, this might seem difficult at first. However, you should try to speak to your spouse as respectfully as possible and say what you really mean. If it is impossible for you and your spouse to communicate without getting into a screaming match, your divorce lawyer in Frederick, MD can just negotiate with your spouse’s lawyer.