There’s a lot to be worried about when it comes to divorce. Child custody disputes are common, but those who are subjected to a high-asset divorce are often concerned about what their financial standing will look like post-marriage dissolution. After all, divorce can be an enormous financial transaction.
While Alabama is an equitable distribution state, meaning that your marital estate will be divided in a fair, although not necessarily equal fashion, you’ll need to take steps to ensure that you’re getting a fair outcome from your property division process. How do you go about doing that, though? Let’s look at some of those steps now:
- Have personal property valuated: Whether it’s heirloom jewelry or artwork, you need to know the value of your marital assets if you want to make arguments about what sort of distribution is fair. There can be significant disagreement about the value of certain pieces of property, though, so be prepared to reach out to experts in the field who can help you gain a clear picture of the value of your personal property.
- Don’t overlook business-related issues: If you own a business, then it’s probably going to get lumped into the property division process. Again, valuation is key here, but there are many methods to business valuation, so you’ll want to make sure that you’re using the methodology that makes the most sense under your circumstances. You’ll also want to ensure that the business’s financial records are carefully analyzed and that all income and losses are accounted for and justified. Don’t forget to take into account expected growth, too, as this can be a major contributing factor to the valuation of your business.
- Consider real estate: Multiple properties can quickly increase the value of your marital estate. You’ll need to identify these properties and ensure that you have an accurate valuation before moving forward with them in your property division.
- Investments: Investments can be worth a lot. Identify these accounts and make sure that you obtain a Qualified Domestic Relations Order if you need one to properly divide retirement accounts.
- Look for hidden assets: In high-asset divorces, spouses sometimes try to hide assets so that they can remove them from the property division process and keep them for themselves post-divorce. Therefore, you’ll want to get access to your marital financial records to look for red flags of hidden assets, such as unjustified withdrawals.
- Don’t neglect foreign assets: Don’t forget foreign assets, either. This property may be challenging to locate and loop into the property division process, but you should be able to learn about them through the discovery process.
- Consider variations in income: Many high-net worth families have multiple revenue streams. This can make it difficult to clearly articulate marital income, especially when you’re taking into account variances that occur from year-to-year. Here, it’s a good idea to look at several years’ worth of income and expenses to find an average that you can use when considering issues like child support and alimony.
- Analyze spousal support: Alimony is another major consideration in high-asset divorces. Regardless of which side of the dispute you fall on, you’ll want to ensure that there’s a clear understanding of each party’s financial standing and the marital standard of living. You’ll want to be diligent and holistic here if you want a fair outcome on this issue.
KNOW HOW TO NAVIGATE YOUR HIGH-ASSET DIVORCE
Your financial standing post-divorce depends a lot on how you handle the property division process. That’s why it’s imperative that you take a holistic approach to your divorce, building the legal arguments that you need to protect your position. To learn more about how you can address the matters discussed above, please consider reaching out to an attorney who you think will zealously advocate for you and your future.