Divorce and the family business

Posted by Simon Burge on
If you are part of a family business you know how important it is to stop the personal emotions affecting the business.

Divorce/separation are top stressors and if you or any of the other members of your team are going through this, it is very hard to keep the personal emotions from spilling over and harming the business interests.

Unfortunately divorce is part of modern life, but dealing with the process the right way, can minimise the conflict and the impact for the people involved. Resolution solicitors aim to try to assist you through this difficult time by using various forms of dispute resolution as alternatives to the traditional court process. For example, you can us collaborative law to both work together with your lawyers to find the most satisfactory way of sorting out the financial consequences of a relationship breakdown.

In a traditional divorce the Judge and the lawyers have to work within the narrow court regime on issues that the courts have deemed important. In collaborative practice you are free to sort out the problems that are the most important to you and to try to find creative solutions that may be outside those that can be imposed by the court.

Having four of you working together on a problem, with additional professional advisors as necessary, gets those creative juices flowing. You can come up with tailor made solutions to your specific problems.

There are also options of mediation and arbitration which can take out some of the confrontation and conflict. A resolution solicitor can discuss these options with you, and help you decide which is the best one for you.

Given the complex interrelationships in family businesses, dispute resolution is an ideal way to move forward without the hostility and bitterness often found in a traditional divorce. Other family members can contribute to the problem-solving rather than taking sides. You can preserve peoples’ dignity with the control they have over their own divorce and in turn, the reduction in animosity and bitterness means that the valued contributions of family members that otherwise might be lost, can continue to add value to the business.

You may also be able to preserve the family business, rather than having to sell it as a consequence of the divorce/separation, which might otherwise happen in a case disputed in court.

Dispute resolution can also be used for resolving business disputes, not just for divorces.

About the Author

Simon is a Partner in our Family Law team in our Southampton office. Simon is an experienced family law practitioner specialising in high net value family cases.

Simon Burge
Email Simon
023 8085 7088

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