If you got married and you had far more money than your spouse, you may have considered a prenup. Ultimately, though, perhaps you decided not to use one because you felt uncomfortable bringing it up. You did not want to insult your spouse.
The issue is that refusing to use a prenup could mean that you don’t get to keep all of the assets that you think of as your own if the marriage ends in divorce. Maybe your business was only worth the $100,000 you had invested in it when you tied the knot. Now it’s worth millions. You think of that money as your own: You turned $100,000 into millions by working hard at your company and helping it grow.
However, that’s marital property. You earned it while you and your spouse were together, giving them a claim to a portion of what you have earned. This is why business owners sometimes feel like they’ve lost much of what they worked for if they get divorced. If your spouse takes half of your assets and you have the rest invested in the company, do you have anything for yourself?
If you’re worried about this and you’re already married, it is too late for a prenup. That said, you may be able to use a postnup to accomplish much of the same thing. If you and your spouse agree to sign the postnuptial agreement, nothing changes if you stay married. If you get divorced, though, you can protect your own assets and your company.
Life is complicated for business owners going through a divorce. Be sure you know exactly what steps to take.