Among the many issues that need to be decided during a divorce is how to divide the couple’s marital assets and debts in an equitable way between the two spouses. This usually involves the division of real estate property, furniture, vehicles, bank accounts, retirement accounts, stocks, and other items of value. However, when one spouse owns a business or the spouses own a business together, that business is also likely to be an asset for which ownership must be determined during a divorce.
Determining the Value of a Business
The first thing to understand is that both the rights to the business and the value of the business must be considered to determine whether it is a marital asset and how it will be handled during the property division process. Under Illinois law, a marital asset is an asset that is acquired by either spouse during the marriage, with limited exceptions. This generally includes a business that was started or acquired during the marriage.
There are different ways to value a business, including approaches based on market value, assets, and expected future earnings. Each of these methods may be used for different purposes, and you and your spouse may have trouble agreeing on the value of the business, so it is often a good idea to work with a professional business valuator and seek multiple valuations....