Divorces for any couple have certain common elements that need to be addressed, including dividing the finances, custody or visitation of children (if any), and spousal support. However, couples who have accumulated wealth during marriage, or who entered into the marriage already wealthy face even more complicated issues unique to high net-worth divorces. Retaining an attorney who is well versed in the issues confronting divorcing wealthy couples is a necessity.
Division of assets
While financially successful divorcées may confront any number of unique issues depending on their personal circumstances, in our significant experience the division of the following assets are most likely to create challenges:
- Homes and other real estate
- Accounts and funds, including retirement funds, trusts, stock and bonds
- Possessions, including jewelry, gifts, art and furnishings
- Intangible predictors of future income, including celebrity standing and licenses or degrees (note: latter may change based on recently proposed New York legislation)
One spouse often challenges claims by the other that a given asset was brought into the marriage and thus should not be considered marital property. Questions such as how which of your assets were commingled, who contributed to the creation or increase of family wealth and who is entitled to what asset (and in what proportion) will likely arise and require answers.
If you are about to enter into a high net-worth divorce in New York, you need a lawyer who understands the intricacies of these cases, and who can safeguard your rights to all or part of your marital assets.