Long term relationships that involve joint business dealings prior to marriage can lead to complicated divorces. In a recent case, a wife challenged a trial court’s finding that she and her husband had formed a business partnership in 1995 and that properties purchased in her name belonged to the partnership.
The wife filed for divorce, alleging the parties married in 2009. The husband alleged the parties had been informally married since 1984. He also alleged, in the alternative, that they had entered into a farming and ranching business partnership in 1995.
The parties began a romantic relationship in 1984. In 1995, the wife bought a property in her name and made all related payments. The husband moved into the property to work on the house. The wife also worked on the house on weekends.