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What techniques are available for preserving the interests our family business during collaborative negotiations?

The court process allows for only a rights based determination of the issues at hand. However, there are many intricacies involved when separation and divorce include a family business. As an alternative to a purely rights based approach, other options can be considered in a collaborative approach, including:

  • Family trusts or holding companies as a method of sharing income from the family business
  • Tax planning, avoiding the possibility of triggering a Canada Revenue Agency audit
  • Considering the formation of a new family trust
  • Employment of children in the family business
  • Estate, succession, and capacity planning
  • Ensuring... MORE »

Most Recent FAQs

How can collaborative practice save our business?

Collaborative Practice Family Law offers an effective alternative to the inherently adversarial court process. Both parties must enter into the process voluntarily, and agrees to resolve their issues respectfully. While the court process is oriented toward the legal rights and obligations of both parties, the collaborative process allows both parties to generate options that best suit their family. This allows the family much more self-determination in creating an outcome based on their specific needs.

One of the key elements of collaborative practice is the voluntary sharing of full and frank disclosure... MORE »

What legal options do I have for saving our family business?

In marriage and common-law relationships, the value of your business may be appraised and divided on separation, where the parties cannot agree on terms of division. In exceptional circumstances, the court will appoint a business administrator to handle the business, or shares will be given to the spouse who does not have legal title to the business and who is owed a payment. This can have a significant impact on your business’ reputation as you will not be in complete control of your business.

To avoid assigning control of your business... MORE »

My spouse and I run our own business and I do not want it to go belly up as a result of our divorce. How can a family law lawyer help me save our business?

A family law lawyer can help you save your family business by giving it priority during interest-based collaborative negotiations.

In many family law matters involving children, the spouses are able to agree to cooperate in order to address the best interests of the children.  In many ways, a family business can be used as a similar incentive: spouses can agree to cooperate in order to address the best interests of the family business.

While fueling conflict is an almost unavoidable side effect of the court system, a collaborative approach is a very... MORE »

My limited scope retainer is finished. What’s next?

When your lawyer completes all of the tasks contained in your limited scope retainer, the solicitor-client relationship comes to an end. You should now determine if your outstanding legal needs would be met by another limited scope retainer.

If so, a new limited scope retainer will be required, even if it is for the same legal services. If not, then a general retainer may be a good idea, provided you have the financial means to do so.

... MORE »