Every divorce comes with its own unique complications, but if you also own a business, it complicates the matter considerably. Businesses are often financial mazes, and to make things even more difficult, the finances of family businesses are often closely intertwined with family finances. To obtain your fair share of marital property, you are going to need a thorough business evaluation that demonstrates exactly what you are working with, and this can be more difficult than it seems. If you are going through a divorce that involves a business, you owe it to yourself to work closely with an experienced Killeen divorce attorney.
Your Valuation Expert
To begin, you will need to secure a valuation expert. If you and your divorcing spouse are able to work together, you will only need one valuation that you both agree to accept as an important financial component of your divorce. If your divorce is more heated, however, you might both be motivated to obtain your own business valuations.
The Potential for Abuse
The fact is that your business is likely the main piece of your financial puzzle, but it can also provide an opportunity to obscure finances and even to hide assets – via obfuscation – if your spouse is so inclined. While you may believe your spouse is above such nefarious activity, it is important to recognize that the stress of a divorce – and the potential loss of wealth – can push an otherwise reasonable person into making some extremely unreasonable choices.
If you both obtain valuations, they should – if they are both accurate and above board – be reasonably close in their final calculations. If they are not, you will need to take a closer look.
Evaluating Your Valuation Report
Once you have obtained your valuation report (or reports), there are some basics you should look for, which include:
- The Clear Assignment of Task – Your valuation report should clearly delineate the task it is attempting to accomplish.
- A Comprehensive Report – Your report should contain all the relevant information and should include said information in its calculations.
- Alternate Methods of Valuation – There are three major methods of valuation, and a report should generally include at least two of these. If using a different methodology makes a significant difference, it might be a red flag.
- Reasonable Projections – If the financial projections reported do not strike you as reasonable, take a closer look. Your knowledge as the business owner makes you an expert on the matter, and if the projections seem off to you, they very well may be.