"A favor filli" ensuring the best interest of the child in determination/division of matrimonial property: a special reference to family businesses
A family business is an interesting business structure as it connotes a structure in which the interests in ownerships, managements and business overlapped upon one another. There is also a confinement of ownerships on family members to ensure business legacy of the family name. This confinement would be prejudiced in the case of divorce as the family structure shall be affected or broken by separation of the parent. In many cases, interest in the business shall be divided between the spouses according to their interest or contribution to the business. The case law shows that, the issue of the best interest of the child is seldom applied in determination and division of interest/shares in business as a matrimonial property; albeit the family business structure was initially meant for the children and for the continuation of the family name. This paper intends to look into case law pertaining to matrimonial property which involved family business and to identify the Malaysian court approaches in determining or dividing the interest in business as matrimonial property. The main objective of this paper is to highlight that "the doctrine of favor filli" (best interest of the child) should be applied by the court in cases involving family business as a matrimonial property. Research methodology which is adopted in this research is statutory and case law analysis.
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