Many individuals in Virginia develop their entrepreneurial spirits by starting or opening their own businesses. While business ownership can be risky and can cause some to experience fear over their futures, some find comfort in going into business with loved ones like spouses. While business ownership with a spouse can be fulfilling, it can also become messy if the partners choose to divorce and divide their entity.
Virginia is an equitable division property state, which means that martial property is divided fairly among the parties instead of directly in half as would be done in a community property state. If a business is considered marital property, it will be subject to this form of division, and it is therefore important that a business be properly classified as martial or separate before this division is undertaken.
Often when a business is opened during a marriage it will be considered the marital property of the partners. Similarly, when two married people jointly start a business as co-owners they may both be considered owners of the business property. In some cases, however, individuals who own businesses before they marry may find that their entities stay their own separate property since they never comingled their businesses with their spouses.
When a business-owning Virginian decides to end their marriage they might benefit from contacting their trusted divorce and family law attorney. Dividing up business assets can be tricky and individuals should avoid making costly mistakes on their own. This post does not provide any legal advice. It is offered only as information and readers are encouraged to seek their own legal support.