high asset divorce

Common Financial Issues During a High Asset Divorce

High asset divorces are considerably more complicated and drawn out than divorces between partners with a standard amount of assets. Whether you are a high earner in the marriage or not, you have a lot to lose in a divorce. It’s important to know the common pitfalls of a high asset divorce and avoid them with the help of a high asset divorce attorney.

To discuss your divorce in greater detail, contact Kirk Drennan Law at 205-803-3500.

Proper Asset Valuation

A number of high asset families have money tied up in unique or “niche” assets. These require specialized valuation, as turning to a professional who handles this issue in “regular” divorces could lead to wildly inaccurate estimates.

Getting proper valuations can be time-consuming as parties may dispute the other’s choice of valuator. Your attorney can help you work through these issues.

Hidden Assets

When there’s a lot at stake, people are far more likely to engage in unethical behavior. Don’t be surprised if one party hides assets. Whether that means one party hiding some of their income in a separate account, “giving” assets or funds to family members, or squirreling away cash, these issues can lead to egregiously unfair agreements that leave one party with far more than the other. Whichever side of the divorce you’re on, plan on a full forensic financial audit to ensure that all assets are accounted for.

Maintaining the Family’s Lifestyle

The issues that are relatively easy to decide in a standard divorce become more complicated when lots of money is involved. Consider, for example, child support and alimony. The goal of child support is to ensure that a child enjoys the same standard of living at both parents’ homes. If one partner earns a large salary and the other earns much less, the higher-earning parent may have to pay a large amount of child support to make up the difference.

Alimony strives to support the lower-earning spouse until they have the chance to get the education or training they need to support themselves. However, in a high asset divorce, it’s likely that closing that gap is impossible. The parties must find a fair compromise that does not deprive either party.

Income Variances

Families with substantial assets often have multiple income streams. This makes it extremely difficult to determine child support and alimony when compared to a family that has a steady paycheck. The court must find a way to ensure that both partners are treated fairly while taking into account the fact that income could vary substantially from month to month.

Foreign Assets

If any of your assets are tied up in foreign businesses, properties, or bank accounts, your divorce could take much longer than expected. You may need to valuate and access these assets before they can be fairly divided in a divorce.

Drawn Out Divorce Process

All of these issues often lead to an extremely long, complex, and drawn out divorce process. Divorce moves most quickly when both parties agree on the important topics and compromise on everything else.

This is much less likely to happen in a high asset divorce than in a standard divorce. Both parties have plenty to lose if they compromise too much or agree too readily to the other party’s terms. While an agreement is generally reached before court, it often takes a substantial amount of time to come to a fair compromise on just a single topic. When you repeat that over and over for each asset and each issue within the marriage, you’re quickly spending all your time in negotiations.

While you should have a divorce lawyer regardless, it is even more important in a high asset divorce. You can expect the other side to fight hard for what they deserve, so you need your own attorney to avoid getting steamrolled.

Find Out How Kirk Drennan Law Can Help You

Are you in the midst of a high asset divorce? We can help. We know how much you stand to lose, and our goal is to help you get what you deserve. Schedule a consultation now by calling Kirk Drennan Law at 205-803-3500 or contacting our team online.

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