When Texas couples who started a company decide to get a divorce, it can be difficult to determine what will happen to the business. If the couple did not have a buyout agreement when they founded the company, the business could end up being given to one of the estranged spouses or be sold altogether.
If a couple is in some sort of relationship when they found a company, it is recommended that they discuss some sort of buyout so that the business can continue to function if the relationship sours. Discussing buyout clauses can be uncomfortable for both individuals; however, it could prevent the company's demise in the future. The founders of a Delaware company, for example, found this out the hard way when their romance ended and they could no longer run the company together.
As the couple never got married, they did not draw up an agreement that determined who would leave if they could no longer functionally run the company together. Eventually the case went to the state legislature as there were concerns over what would happen to the company's 3,500 employees if the business was sold.
If a family business is on the line during a divorce, it can make the divorce process much more difficult for a former couple especially if they both worked hard to ensure that the company thrived. If the former couple did not draft up a buyout clause, a family law attorney may help a person keep control of the company in exchange for other assets. If neither individuals want to continue to run the company once the divorce is finalized, the attorney may ask that the company be sold and the funds be split equitably between the former couple.