Many non-divorce lawyers rarely think about the lawyers that work their craft in divorce-land. Transaction lawyers, M&A, business start-up, and the like make the fatal flaw of not picking the brain that could matter in a real way to their clientele. Lawyers need to re-evaluate that purpose of killing so many trees.
The mountain of documents we create are to protect our clients from a day that is the equivalent to when North Korea launches a nuke at San Francisco. Clauses and various provisions are quickly reviewed to see whether or not that form you borrowed from your colleague down the hall covered the bad scenario that is now shaking out. The good news is that these worse case scenarios are rarely the case; or are they?
Divorce happens to everyone, and by an ever growing percentage. It happens to lawyers, business owners, and leaders in industry. But rarely do buy-sell agreements, ESOPs, or other transaction documents cover the the bad day so common to so many – a divorce. In fact, with odds that your client will see a divorce, are you covering all the ground that you could? Likely not.
Every transaction is different, and therefore, how to deal with an unscheduled divorce is also unique with every transaction. The question is, if so-and-so is served with divorce papers, am I protecting the client adequately? The business assets adequately? The viability of the business adequately?
A vengeful spouse can lay ruins to the best of companies and the best of your forms, leaving your client crying for an out that your documents could have easily covered. Don’t make the mistake like so many others and cover the scenario that the odds tell us is likely to happen.
So, when you start diving into the world of documents on your next big deal, do some lawyering and cover your client’s bad day, before it happens.