When you and your spouse decide to get a divorce, you will have to take an inventory of all your assets for your property distribution proceedings. But depending on how many assets you and your spouse have combined, you may have to enter into a high net worth divorce. Continue reading to learn the difference between this and a standard divorce and how an experienced Morristown high net worth divorce attorney at Graves Andrews, LLC can help protect your assets.
What is the difference between a high net worth divorce and a standard divorce?
To reiterate, the main difference between a high net worth divorce and a standard divorce is the total assets you and your spouse share. More specifically, if you and your spouse have a combined $1 million or more in assets, then you may have to enter a high net worth divorce. Anything less may fall into a standard divorce.
In addition, high-net couples tend to have complex assets that need to be distributed in a divorce. This is opposed to the simple assets that come with a standard divorce, such as the family home, the family car, cash, cash equivalents, etc. And examples of complex assets are as follows:
- Your and your spouse’s businesses, whether it be sole ownerships or joint ownerships.
- Your and your spouse’s properties, whether it be vacation homes or rental properties.
- Your and your spouse’s deferred incomes and investments, whether it be stocks or bonds.
- Your and your spouse’s retirement assets, whether it be 401ks or pensions.
- Your and your spouse’s high-net collectibles, whether it be artwork or jewelry.
How do I protect my assets in my high net divorce?
Understandably, your assets may have a certain monetary and non-monetary value that you do not want to give up. You must bring forward proof that your assets are separate property and not marital property. This is so they can be removed from the equitable distribution proceedings. Examples of proof include dated photographs, receipts, and bank account statements, which can show that you bought these assets before your marriage or during your marriage from a separate account. More importantly, you must bring forward your prenuptial agreement, if you have one, in case it includes clauses on which spouse gets to keep which assets in the event of a divorce.
At the same time, you must make sure that your spouse is not hiding assets, or overall their true net worth, from you. This commonly occurs in high net worth divorces because spouses are unwilling to give up most of their complex assets in equitable distribution. This can be accomplished by hiring a forensic accountant for your divorce proceedings.
For more information on high net worth divorces, reach out to a skilled Morristown family law attorney. We look forward to speaking with you.