Family Business in Crisis: Diffusing the Impact of Divorce

Most couples aren't thinking about divorce as they're getting married, but for jewelers who don't prepare for the possibility, a divorce is as much of a crisis for the family business as it is for the family. Two out of five U.S. marriages (43 percent) end within their first 15 years, say studies by the National Center for Health and the U.S. Census Bureau, while some private studies say a third of all those married will divorce at some point. With over 80 percent of U.S. retail jewelry enterprises family-owned, the possibility and effects of divorce on a business should be of concern to jewelers. “Divorce is never pleasant, but without preparations, it can also be a significant problem for a family business and its continuance,” says Barbara Draper, director of the Center for Family Business at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, N.H. Here are what experts say should be d

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