More Money, Different Concerns
While divorce normally comes with a certain level of complexity, adding a variety of assets of higher worth can add more difficulty to the process. Additional considerations must be given when more money is involved in a divorce. But how exactly does a high-asset divorce differ from what many would assume is “traditional,” especially if the process is very similar? Here are some factors to keep in mind.
As its name suggests, a high-asset divorce primarily differs from a more traditional divorce because of the higher number and different types of assets involved. Regardless of the type of divorce, there normally is some type of property distribution and ownership determination that varies state by state. The nature of that division as well as the length of time and energy put into it may change depending on the number of assets involved.
For example, consider if a couple has cash, vehicles, a house, and other property acquired during the marriage. Their process, while still time-consuming, will look very different from the couple with those assets plus retirement account benefits, stocks, bonds, cryptocurrencies, additional real estate, and a small business. That level of asset worth immediately creates a more time-consuming property division step in the divorce.
Along the same lines, a couple with a higher level of assets will likely have a higher chance of requiring someone to value certain assets compared to a more traditional asset level. A couple that owns a business, for example, may have to work with an outside expert in order to accurately place a value on the business for division purposes.
While there may be a need for a more traditional divorce to have some valuation come in if there are a few complex assets, a high-asset divorce has a higher likelihood of needing one of these experts.
Spousal Maintenance Payments
Spousal maintenance (or alimony) may be awarded to a dependent spouse in a divorce depending on the factors surrounding the case. This is normally true of divorce of any type; however, a high-asset divorce may lead to higher spousal maintenance payments.
Texas law states that alimony may be awarded to a spouse only if they would not be able to provide for themselves without it. If a couple enjoyed a relatively luxurious lifestyle during the marriage and they end up getting a divorce, the spouse with a lower income may require some type of spousal maintenance in order for that person to provide for themself.
While anyone getting a divorce has the ability to attempt to hide assets during a divorce (an act that is illegal, by the way), a higher number of assets present can greatly raise the temptation someone may feel to try and conceal those they would like to protect from property division. When getting a divorce, both parties disclose all owned assets on a form signed and treated as a sworn affidavit; failure to list all assets, intentional or otherwise, may result in serious penalties.
Despite this warning, some people attempt to deceive the court and their spouses by trying to hide assets. Because of this, couples going through a high-asset divorce may need to hire a forensic accountant to comb through all assets in an attempt to find anything hidden.
The complexity surrounding high-asset divorce cases requires a special touch. An attorney is needed to oversee the challenges that high-asset divorce cases bring; their expertise in the field can help those going through this type of divorce determine how they should proceed.
At Law Offices Of Mark M. Childress, we understand how important it is to fight for your property rights. We want to help you protect what is yours and fight for your rights to your assets. No one should have to worry about what happens to their property; we’re here to defend you.
To schedule a consultation, call us at (817) 497-8148 or visit us online and fill out our contact form.