People who own a business in Ohio and who are getting married might want to consider a prenuptial agreement. Prenups are much more common than they used to be, and they can establish the value of a business and how it will be handled in case of a divorce. This can save people time, money and stress if the marriage ends.
First, the prenup can establish what the business is worth at the time of the marriage. This can set that value apart as separate property, and the appreciated value of the business after the marriage will be the amount that is in question. The prenup can also establish a method for determining the value of the business in case of a divorce. This may save time and expense since the process of valuation can be disruptive and costly.
The prenup can also specify what percentage of the business’s value the non-owning spouse will get. This can involve taking a number of things into account, such as whether the non-owning spouse worked for the business and was paid market rates. If that spouse stayed home with the children, a value may need to be determined for this as well. Additional factors, such as whether the business owner took a smaller salary that prevented the accumulation of savings, may also need to be considered.
If there is no prenuptial agreement, the couple will have to decide how to divide the business, or they will have to go to court where a judge will make the decision. If they own the business together, they may decide to continue running it, with one person taking a more active role, or they might want to sell it. One person might also buy the other out. Their respective attorneys may help them reach an agreement in these negotiations.