Heymann & Fletcher

How to value an inherited business during a divorce

Property division is a complicated matter, and no two New Jersey families will share the same set of needs when it comes to dividing marital wealth. During a divorce, there are a number of different asset types to consider. For couples in which one spouse has inherited a business, determining how to divide that asset can be a challenge.

If a spouse has signed a prenuptial or post-nuptial agreement, then it is important to review the terms of that contract to determine how the business will be handled. Reach out to a divorce attorney if there are any questions on what assets are and are not covered. If there are no provisions for inherited wealth, or if there is no prenup in place, then the business will most likely be included in the property division process, just like any other asset. 

In order to determine how to divide the asset, it is first necessary to determine the value of the business at the time it was passed down, as well as at the time of separation. In many cases, there will have been a valuation done near the time of inheritance for tax or insurance purposes. Getting a current valuation is simpler to achieve, and there are professionals who specialize in assessing the value of various businesses or business interests.

When faced with the prospect of a divorce, New Jersey spouses should make every effort to reach a fair division of marital wealth. Dividing the value of an inherited business is sometimes part of that process. While this is not always a simple matter, there is plenty of help available from professionals in both asset valuation and family law.

Source: thelegalintelligencer.com, "Gifted and Inherited Business Interests in Divorce ", Terry Silver, Dec. 29, 2016

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