The process can be complicated when couples get divorced, even when amicable. For high net-worth couples, the stakes are even higher as a large number of assets and property must be divided.
High net-worth divorces involve complex legal issues that require specific knowledge of both business and family law topics. Whether contentious or not, high net-worth divorces require an attorney with specialized business and family law knowledge and the experience to handle the legal, business, and financial intricacies inherent in high net-worth divorces.
This article will examine some of the most common intricacies inherent in high net-worth divorce cases:
Determining Marital Assets
Determining the extent of whether the parties’ assets are marital, non-marital, and/or mixed requires more complex accounting and financial planning considerations than a typical divorce. Understanding the distinctions between these types of assets is essential when going through a high net-worth divorce.
In most states, marital property is subject to a process called “equitable distribution,” meaning that the court will attempt to divide the property fairly between both spouses. For this reason, knowing what qualifies as marital property is important. Generally speaking, absent a prenup or post nup that states differently, all income and assets acquired during the marriage are considered marital property regardless of who paid for them or their name. This includes items such as real estate, cars, inheritances, pensions and retirement accounts, stock options, and other investments.
On the other hand, non-marital assets are those owned prior to marriage or those received after separation by inheritance or gift from someone other than your spouse. These can include gifts received before marriage from family members or employers or earnings from a premarital business venture. Non-marital assets are not divided in equitable distribution since they belong exclusively to one spouse and not both.
Mixed assets are those that have elements of both marital and non-marital property. An example would be an investment account established before marriage but funded with money earned during the marriage. Mixed assets should be carefully evaluated to determine how much of their value is attributable to each party so that an appropriate division can be made under equitable distribution laws.
High net worth divorces require careful consideration of asset divisions due to a large amount of marital property involved in many cases. It is important for individuals going through a high net-worth divorce to understand what qualifies as marital versus non-marital property to receive a fair settlement under equitable distribution laws.
Assessment of desirability of assets
The assessment of desirability of assets can be an especially difficult task. In such cases, it is important to understand which assets have liabilities that may outweigh their benefits and which assets could offer long-term stability and growth.
Investment accounts are some of the most common assets in a high net-worth divorce. On the one hand, these accounts offer the potential for growth over time due to market fluctuations. Additionally, they can provide income for retirement or other financial goals if appropriately managed. However, the downside is that certain risks are associated with investments in stocks and bonds that can cause losses in capital value over time. Furthermore, investment accounts may be subject to taxation when withdrawn from an account or passed on to heirs through inheritance.
Another common asset in high net-worth divorces is real estate. Owning real estate allows you to build equity through appreciation or rental income, which can yield long-term financial benefits. However, owning real estate also comes with certain liabilities such as property taxes, insurance costs and maintenance expenses—all of which should be factored into your decision-making process when evaluating the desirability of those assets during a high net-worth divorce.
Businesses owned by either party involved in a high net-worth divorce can also be considered desirable assets depending on their overall value. Owning a business allows you to control how profits are used as well as how much money is taken out each year as salary or dividends; however, businesses also come with overhead costs, such as payroll taxes and employee benefits, that must be taken into consideration when assessing the desirability of those assets during a high net worth divorce situation.
When dealing with high net-worth divorces, it’s important to consider all factors when assessing the desirability of assets during those proceedings—including both potential benefits and liabilities associated with each asset type.
Divorces in Multiple Jurisdictions
When parties involved in a high net-worth divorce live or own property across multiple state lines, it can be difficult to determine what laws should govern the division and distribution of such property. Generally, courts will apply the law of the state where both parties last lived together as husband and wife when determining how assets should be divided. However, suppose one party has already established residency in another state before filing for a divorce. In that case, other states’ laws may supersede the law governing where both parties last resided together as husband and wife. It is important to note that if any part of your marital property was acquired while living in one particular state, that state might have jurisdiction over how such assets are divided upon dissolution of marriage.
The divisions of assets across international borders can become even more complex than those within domestic boundaries. Each country has its own set of laws regarding assets obtained during a marriage, including which assets must be divided upon dissolution and how they should be distributed. Suppose an individual has assets located in multiple countries. In that case, it is important to consult with an attorney who understands the nuances of each jurisdiction to ensure that all applicable laws are considered when dividing marital property.
Additionally, any inheritance received by either spouse may also be subject to different rules depending on the country from which it was received; these rules can significantly impact how such inheritance is treated upon dissolution of marriage.
It is essential for individuals dealing with such divorces to understand the nuances associated with each jurisdiction to ensure their marital properties are divided properly according to applicable law.
Implications of divorce on board of directors and control of business.
High net-worth divorces can be particularly challenging for business owners. Not only do they have to consider the implications of divorce on their personal lives, but they must also be aware of how it can affect the board of directors and control of their business.
When two business owners divorce, they must decide how to divide their assets. If both parties want to maintain control of their share in the business, they will likely need to buy out their partner’s stake to prevent disputes over who has ultimate control. This can be an expensive endeavour depending on how much each individual owns in the company. It is important for divorcing couples to consider their financial situation before deciding whether or not to go through with this option.
In some cases, a divorcing couple may have a third party involved in the ownership structure—such as a board member or other investor—who could be affected by the divorce proceedings. In these situations, it is important to consider how changes in ownership will affect this third party’s rights and responsibilities as part of the company’s leadership structure. The couple must also consider any legal documents that may be impacted by their decision—such as operating agreements, shareholder agreements, lease and loan agreements—and make sure that all parties involved are aware of any changes.
When two partners decide to dissolve their partnership due to divorce, each partner must understand what rights they are entitled to when it comes time for them to separate their assets. Depending on state law, partners may be able to keep certain assets acquired during their partnership or even receive compensation for those assets if needed. Additionally, suppose one partner wishes to remain in control of the business after divorcing their ex-partner. In that case, they will need to ensure that all legal documents are properly executed so that no future disputes arise between them regarding ownership rights or responsibilities.
The importance of hiring attorneys with business acumen
These are just some of the intricacies involved in high net-worth divorces. There are other things to consider too, such as the presence of offshore financial accounts and assets, prenuptial agreements, and privacy and publicity concerns.
When facing a high net-worth divorce, it’s critical to have an experienced attorney who knows both business and family law on your side. They understand the complex legal issues surrounding these types of divorces as well as any potential tax implications or other financial arrangements which may arise during negotiations.
A qualified lawyer can help you navigate this difficult time while protecting your interests throughout proceedings—ensuring that you get what you deserve out of any settlement reached between parties involved in the case. With specialized knowledge about these types of divorces, an experienced attorney can make all the difference when dealing with a high net-worth situation like this one.
At The Campbell Law Group P.A., we offer a wide range of services tailored to each client’s individual needs. Our team specializes in civil litigation, corporate law, commercial transactions, employer representation, and family law matters such as divorce and paternity matters. Whether you are an individual looking for legal representation or an established business seeking guidance on how best to navigate potential legal disputes or other complex matters, The Campbell Law Group P.A has the experience and expertise necessary to provide sound advice and effective solutions tailored specifically for you or your business’s needs.