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Divorce & The Family Business

By October 16, 2023October 18th, 2023Conflict Management, Finance & Wealth Management2 min read

Few can claim the surprise of declining a $975 million check. That’s what Sue Ann Arnall did in January of 2015. During a turbulent and highly broadcasted divorce involving family business interests, Arnall initially turned down a check from her former spouse, Harold Hamm, the billionaire CEO of Continental Resources. Later, having a change of heart, she accepted the nearly $1 billion she had first dismissed.

The Hamm-Arnall divorce is rumored to be one of the most costly in history, with figures soaring up to $5 billion. Although not all divorces reach this financial magnitude, the ramifications can be significant, especially when a family business becomes part of the equation.

Research from the US Census Bureau shows that close to 3.7 million businesses in the US are jointly run by couples. Navigating the complexities of a divorce involving family business can be complex and emotionally taxing. It underscores the importance of having preemptive discussions, especially if you’re steering a thriving enterprise with your partner.

For couples blending love and enterprise, foresight is indispensable. Before intertwining marital and business pursuits, having a mutual understanding and a contingency blueprint is crucial. It highlights and provides essential details of the company’s future trajectory and assets in the face of potential separation, divorce, or even death. Common strategies for resolving disputes in family businesses during divorces encompass spousal buyouts or dissolving the company to share the proceeds.

REGENERATION stresses the urgency of crafting such strategic plans, irrespective of where you currently stand in your business or marital voyage. This forward-thinking approach paves the way for open communication among family stakeholders, aiming for a collective agreement. Our mission revolves around supporting family businesses. If such enterprises hit rough patches, we support everyone’s interest and usher in fair solutions.

For more insights or guidance, please reach out to us. We’re keen on offering expertise and meaningful dialogues for a productive situation involving loved ones.