If you are a doctor with your own private practice going through a divorce in Washington, you will want to protect your business. You worked hard to build your practice, and your livelihood depends on your ability to continue building your business and making it successful. Here is what you need to know when going through a divorce.
What factors must be considered regarding your practice?
One of important factors to consider is when your practice was established. If you started your practice prior to your marriage, you may be able to protect it when dividing property and assets between you and your spouse. However, if your practice was established after the marriage and continues to grow during your divorce, it may be considered marital property.
Other issues such as whether your spouse helped to fund the practice or if they have partial ownership can also factor into how the practice is treated during your divorce. If you have partners in the practice, they must be made aware of your divorce and how the practice can be impacted.
Determining the value of your practice
You will have to determine the value of your practice during your divorce. An appraiser will be able to help you get a better idea of its value. This is necessary if the court decides that your practice is considered marital property and you are required to share a portion of it with your spouse as part of your divorce settlement. The future value of your practice may also be taken into consideration.
Will you have to sell your practice to settle the divorce?
You might have fear in your mind that you will have to sell your practice to settle your divorce if your spouse gets a portion from it. However, that is not an issue as the value of the practice is the point. In other words, if your practice is determined to be marital property, your spouse will be due a portion of the practice’s value rather than the practice itself. You may be able to retain ownership and control of your practice during and after the divorce as long as you compensate your spouse for their share of ownership.
It’s fair to worry about what happens to your practice if you’re a doctor going through a divorce. While the practice might be considered marital property, you should be able to continue with it after your marriage ends.