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Family Law Overview
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How might a business impact a divorce?

Being married to a business owner isn’t always easy. Having to deal with the schedule that can be unreliable and the fact that your husband might be called away at any moment to deal with issues related to the business can be challenging and stressful. For some women, this is a very difficult situation, but one that they deal with out of love.

When the marriage starts to go downhill, the business might become even more of an issue. This is because you will have to pay close attention to what is going with the business, as well as with other aspects of the divorce.

How involved are you in the business?

The more involved you are in the business, the better you might fare in the divorce. This is because you have better knowledge of what actually happens with the money. You need to take a close look because there is a chance that your husband might siphon money out of the business in an effort to hide it from the divorce. This is known as sudden income deficit syndrome or SIDS.

What is SIDS?

SIDS occurs when the person who is involved with the finances starts to take money from the business in ways that aren’t easy to spot. This can happen right at the time that the divorce petition is filed, but it can also occur slowly over the months leading up to the petition.

What are the signs of SIDS?

Without having knowledge about the normal income of the business, it is hard to determine if there is a decrease in income. It is a good idea to take a look at the financial records for the business over the course of the last year or longer. This gives you an idea of where the finances stand now versus then. If you see that the income has gone down significantly, especially in the last few months, there is a chance that you are dealing with SIDS.

How is SIDS found?

Divorces that include a business should almost always include a forensic accountant. This professional can take a close look at everything related to the business finances. Looking for unrecorded cash transactions, false vendor or payroll accounts and other similar points can help them to find out if SIDS is a factor in the divorce. Sometimes, reviewing public records and other documents can provide insight into the issue.

Why is SIDS harmful?

When business income and assets aren’t reported properly, you might not get the divorce settlement that you are due. There is also the issue of untruths on the divorce paperwork, which can lead to more issues.