You and your spouse go to work on a daily basis.  However, you own your business in South Florida.  You put in hours of blood, sweat, and tears to build your business and set yourself apart from others in your industry.  Your spouse enjoys the fruits of your business and shares in its success.  Then, your spouse files for divorce and threatens to take half of everything you have worked so hard to build.  Can they really do that?  A lawyer’s favorite answer to any question is “It depends”.

Terms like “fair market value,” “personal goodwill,” and “enterprise goodwill” will play a pivotal part of how your business is valued during a divorce.  Florida courts use the fair market value (FMV) standard to determine the value of your business.  What is FMV?  The Florida Supreme Court defines FMV as simply what a willing buyer will pay and a willing seller will accept, absent duress for the sale.

Why does Florida use FMV?  Courts across the country prefer FMV because it is consistent with the practices of the Internal Revenue Service Rulings.

When determining the value of the business, a business valuation expert will value the assets, liabilities, and possible “goodwill” of the business.  Stay tuned to future blogs for a discussion of “goodwill” in Florida.

At Birnbaum, Lippman & Gregoire, PLLC, we work with respected business valuation professionals in Palm Beach, Broward, Miami-Dade, and Collier Counties who will help determine the amount of your business you and your spouse are entitled to upon divorce.  Are you a business owner or spouse seeking or going through a divorce?  We provide personal, effective, and compassionate legal services at competitive rates.