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When business partners divorce

When couples in Arizona divorce, common concerns include property division, dividing assets, child custody and support payments. When a married couple owns a business together, a whole new layer of complexity has to be dealt with. Surprisingly, however, some couples do manage to continue working together even after their marriage ends.

The decision to preserve a business partnership after divorce is a highly personal one. In some cases, particularly if the divorce involves serious issues, such as abuse or addiction, it may not be wise for spouses to continue their working relationship. When spouses are able to maintain a healthy relationship, however, maintaining joint ownership is a possibility.

Experts generally recommend that both partners learn to compartmentalize the many facets of their relationship. While the marriage may not be going well, it may be possible for the spouses to work productively together on a day-to-day basis. Still, one or both partners may wish to take some time off from the business to create some distance and reduce stress while a divorce is in process.

Even if both partners are committed to maintaining a healthy relationship and taking responsibility for their own emotions, bringing in third parties to assist may be necessary. An experienced mediator, for example, may be able to help the couple determine a path forward in joint ownership of their business. The mediator may also be able to provide conflict resolution strategies that can reduce friction in the workplace.

Individuals who are considering divorce, particularly if they own a business with their spouse, may benefit from consulting with an experienced family law attorney. The lawyer may be able to review the client's circumstances and make recommendations regarding continued ownership of the business or asset division, along with other divorce-related issues.

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