A high-asset divorce usually means a divorce involving a mixture of complex marital assets and liabilities. The spouses might have businesses, multiple parcels of real estate, art, jewelry, and investment instruments that make unwinding their joint affairs complicated.
These situations require a reliable divorce attorney with a sophisticated understanding of business, real estate, and finance, as well as a passionate commitment to ensuring a fair outcome in a divorce. A Boca Raton high-asset divorce lawyer has the patience and tenacity to get you a divorce settlement that is appropriate and fair in the circumstances.
Evaluating Prenuptial and Marital Agreements
High net-worth couples often enter into agreements before or during their marriage governing specific financial issues that might arise in a divorce. A Boca Raton attorney could review these agreements when a couple divorces to determine whether they are enforceable.
Properly drafted prenuptial and marital agreements are legally enforceable contracts. Courts will follow the terms of the agreement when splitting marital assets unless one of the spouses successfully challenges the agreement’s validity. Unfairness or changed circumstances cannot void a prenuptial or marital agreement, and adultery generally does not have an impact. A spouse may raise the following issues to try to void a prenuptial agreement:
- Failure to disclose assets
A spouse could attempt to void a marital agreement for trickery, coercion, fraud, or deceit. In addition, the spouse must receive something of value—what the law calls “consideration”—for entering into a marital agreement. If the spouse who desired the marital agreement did not give the other spouse anything in return for their agreement to limit their rights, it could fail for lack of consideration.
Separating Personal and Marital Property
Divorcing couples must segregate or separate their pre-marital / non-marital from marital property. Pre-marital property is generally everything a spouse owned before the marriage, including bank accounts, businesses, investments, personal property, and real estate. Pre-marital property also includes the debts they have when entering the marriage.
In addition, any property a spouse received during the marriage from an individual other than spouse as a personal gift generally is their non-marital property, including inheritances.
Generally, all other properties and debts the couple acquired during their marriage is marital property. A divorcing couple must distribute their marital property is a way that is fair or equitable to both parties. An experienced Boca Raton high-asset divorce attorney could assist a divorcing spouse in inventorying their non-marital property and ensuring they can keep what is theirs alone.
Understanding Equitable Distribution
Florida Statute § 61.075 governs the division of marital property. Giving each spouse half of the marital property is presumed to be fair and equitable according to the law. However, it recognizes that an even distribution might not be fair in a specific all circumstance.
If a judge must divide the marital assets, they must consider multiple factors to determine a fair distribution, including:
- Whether one spouse retains a home to raise the children
- Whether one spouse has a business or professional practice they wish to retain as their sole property
- Length of the marriage
- Relative economic positions of the parties
- Whether one spouse limited or gave up professional or educational opportunities for the sake of the other
- Whether one spouse supported another in their educational or business endeavors
- The spouses’ relative contributions to the marriage, including homemaking and childcare
- Whether one spouse wasted marital assets
High-asset divorces in Boca Raton often require creative solutions to property distribution. They also require qualified, local divorce attorneys who can understand complex financial transactions and business valuation models to ensure that a settlement is fair to both parties.
Trust a Boca Raton High-Asset Divorce Attorney to Handle Your Situation
If you are leaving a marriage that has a high net worth, property division can be a complex and contentious issue. You might need help protecting what is yours while getting a fair share of the marital assets.
A Boca Raton high-asset divorce lawyer has the financial and legal knowledge to ensure you are treated fairly in your divorce. Call today to schedule a consultation.