I own a business,,, on paper I own it with my estranged husband. He and I are separated and he does absolutely nothing for the business nor does he have an interest. Basically he figured he'd "ride my back" and let me do all the work and he ,,,,, well never mind that.
What I want and need to know,because I am not real sure,but I heard of equitable distribution and that is ,,what? exactly?? Who decides how the business would be distributed? I want to sell it and free myself from him and it and start fresh but he doesn't have a pot-2-p1ss in and he could never buy me out. On the otherhand I have 2 children that I have to take care of as well as this business and the bills, and etc....... I would love to buy him out but I do not have the cash and how would it be determined the amount needed to get him out? He is a bloodsucking addict that I need to cut loose and he is dragging me, my business and the children down this hole right now and I am treading water trying to keep everything going inspite of him; but I am running out of $ and am leary of how I am going to cover bills. If I was to have another person buy him out he would still own the building with me which we still owe for another 12 years and can't refi the loan because it is as if I am up-side-down in a carloan with this building. Well I have approx.... $65,000 in equity in the building so not really upside down but on commercial loans they want more equity than that before they refi, What is the easiest way? I know I need to talk to a lawyer but what do I ask? What do I ask the lawyer and how do I make sure that he/she will protect me and not just settle with the opposing lawyer because they golf on Saturdays??? This is going to be a hard divorce I can tell. I just really want to protect my children and myself because if he gets the $$ he will "smoke it" like he has (we already had my car repossesed and my house in forclosure)I did sell the house before the bank got to it. I am trying to hold on so I can atleast sell the business but that leech profits off my back. How do I stop that? The people here,, you have access to all the good lawyers and advice from accountants I am just asking for some guidance so that my kids future doesn't wind up in a crack pipe. I wish I was kidding too. I went on the lawyer websites and they all want you to join some club and well,,, basically I live in NY --upstate and the lawyers here all know eachother and the judges so they don't really work so hard for ya (I have dealt with several from this county and they have no problem charging, what they do have a problem with is getting the results that I should be getting)I hear all the time about these great lawyers that get results I NEED one now. How do I know when I have one and what should I perceive as a red-flag.... I guess I also need help sorting out what I need to know.
I am an attorney but I am NOT giving you legal advice, it's important you realize this, I'm merely offering a practical idea and strategy. There are many business appraisers who work for banks and the Small Business Administration. You and your estranged ex could enter into an agreement that dictates the split of the company (BTW-equitable distribution essentially means giving a fair share to someone -- I think you are talking about actually distributing whatever equity there is in the company, or liquidating it) such as 50/50, 60/40, 70/30 or something like that, and then either jointly select an appraiser [this can cost a few thousand dollars so you might have the company pay for it] or each select an appraiser and have those two get together to choose the independent appraiser. Then, when the appraisal is in, you pay him whatver the value of his percentage is (over time, lump sum, many opportunities here) and he transfers all of his interest in the company to you (stocks, quit claim deed, etc...). If you decide to sell the company, you don't need an appraiser but might want to get the agreement on distributions prior to selling. Just a thought.