If a wife owns a business solely in her name, if she divorces her husband does this affect the business in any way?

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If a wife owns a business solely in her name, if she divorces her husband does this affect the business in any way?

Would the business need to be sold and divided or does it stay the same? The business was purchased after the marriage.

Asked on February 17, 2011 under Family Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If it's owned solely in her name, in theory the husband does not have a direct claim on it--though at a minimum, it (and the income she derivies from it) would be considered as part of her assets in making decisions as to payments, support, etc. Also, there are conditions under which, even if allegedly owned solely by her, he could asset a cognizable claim against it: e.g. if his or family money or assets were invested into the business; or if he supported her (such as with his job) while she set up and grew the business; or possibly if he was involved in and did alot of work for the business. Therefore, there is no simple answer, and you should consult with a family law attorney (divorce attorney) about the specifics of this case.


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