A differentiation must be made between a business venture and a small home based business. The business venture is intended to be an asset and grow, whereas the home based business is intended as a means to an end. There is a long standing tradition of “mom and pop” home based businesses, and many of these have been successful, especially when one spouse serves an auxiliary or supplementary role to a spouse who primarily focuses on the business, like in the case of the spouse who keeps the books. This is not a true business partnership in the sense of this post. For ventures that are intended to grow and provide value in of themselves, a partnership between spouses creates a situation where the risk of the business or the marriage failing is high. And it must be noted that many of the concerns raised still apply equally in “mom and pop” home based businesses. For many, this is an unacceptable level of risk. A business may fail, but having a business induce your marriage to fail is a misfortune on a whole different level.
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