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Considerations for physicians seeking a divorce

While all divorces are complicated, some divorces can include situations that are more complex than others. For doctors in North Dakota involved with the divorce process, the value of their medical practice becomes a critical issue.

A doctor seeking a divorce will need a careful evaluation of any partnerships or group practices to which he or she belongs. Common questions that need answering include what type of entity the practice is, whether the practice was established before or during the marriage, what funding the practice received and whether participants in the practice hold stock.

Answering these and other questions will help to obtain an accurate valuation of the company. It may also become necessary to employ the services of a forensic accountant who possesses experience with valuations for medical practices. These professionals can examine tangible assets like furniture and office equipment along with intangible assets like accounts receivable and goodwill. Liabilities like loan payments, retirement contributions, the cost of insurance and any taxes currently due also deserve consideration.

It is not uncommon for a medical practice valuation during a divorce to turn into a “battle of the experts.” The expert for one spouse will, in many cases, establish a value for the practice that is quite different from the expert employed by the other spouse. An attorney who understands the process might not accept the testimony of an expert working for the other side without a thorough challenge. If this testimony cannot stand up to intense scrutiny, the expert could become disqualified.

No one gets married with the goal of one day ending the union. However, sometimes it becomes necessary for spouses to part ways even when they both possess the best of intentions. Individuals seeking a divorce may be able to secure a better outcome for themselves by speaking with a family law attorney.