Whether married or not, when a couple in the White Plains area decides to split up, it complicates matters when one or both of them own or share ownership in a privately held business. These business assets are oftentimes tough to precisely quantify, but they can be worth a lot of money. In many cases, they constitute one or both of the partner’s livelihood.

Oftentimes, the couple’s business is going to have to be divided in some way. In a divorce, even if only one of the parties legally owns the business, both parties are entitled to an equitable share in the business under New York’s laws. With respect to unmarried couples, other legal principles might necessitate a division of the business, even if only party actually owns an interest in it.

It is therefore going to be an important step to put a value on the small business. This is a complicated process that can be accomplished in a number of ways. It is usually best done with the help of both a family law and divorce attorney and an accountant or specialist who routinely appraises the value of businesses. How the business actually gets divided up will depend on a number of legal principles with respect to contracts, property law, corporate law and family law.

Another related issue is that of capital gains tax. When dividing business property, it is important to remember that, ultimately, someone is going to be responsible for paying this tax, which is calculated based on the growth in the value of the business. While divorcing couples can usually transfer business property to each other as part of divorce settlement, these taxes still need to be taken in to account.