My husband and I are divorcing after a 6.5 year marriage. We have 4 young children under age of 6. I am currently on an unpaid maternity leave from my job as a teacher. My husband owns his own periodontist businesses. My name is not on his business. We also own 2 condo’s and a house in Weston. Can you help me understand the law as related to divorce and business ownership and everything we own together and child support and alimony?
This is certainly a difficult time for you – and a time to determine what will happen in the future. With 4 young children, divorce mediation would provide a resource to allow you and your husband to come to parenting and financial arrangements that would be in the best interest of all. Generally, any property that is owned during a marriage, regardless of whose name is on it, is considered marital property subject to equitable division. Something like a business which provides the main source of income for your family is a bit trickier to determine. It is hard to see a business as an asset but also as a source of income. The income that is derived from the business would be used (along with your income when you go back to work) to calculate child support. With very young children it is so important for their emotional health, that the conflict between the two of you not become even greater during the separation and divorce process. Mediation can provide an avenue that allows you both to make practical arrangements for your children with the help of a neutral third party. Studies have shown that it is not necessarily divorce that is harmful to children, but the conflict between the parents. Often that conflict can continue for many years in a litigious and adversarial divorce. Although your finances and lifestyle will not be the same as now, you will certainly be able to make it financially if you were to separate.