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The complexities of high-asset divorce

Individuals who are going through a divorce can quickly become overwhelmed by the process. This is often especially true when a couple has a complex portfolio of assets and investments and owns multiple properties. In high-asset divorces, it can not only be difficult to discover, identify and value assets and property; but also to determine and agree upon how such assets and property should be divided.

In divorce terms, the word property encompasses many different assets and possessions. For example, real property relates to a marital home as well as vacation or rental properties, land lots one may own and any business properties. Personal property includes items that one may have in a home, vacation property or business and may include items ranging from furniture and artwork to boats and computers.

Property is also used to describe a couple's and each individual spouse’s financial assets to include banking, investment and retirement accounts and also life insurance cash values inherited assets and assets held in a trust. Additionally, in cases where one or both spouses own all or a portion of a business, the total value of any interests held within that business must be determined. In Massachusetts all property, except property accounted for in a prenuptial agreement, is subject to the terms of equitable distribution.

Not all divorce attorneys understand the intricacies of complex and high net worth divorces and when it comes to divorce negotiations and brokering a favorable divorce settlement, there are no second chances or do overs. Given the numerous different types of properties that must be discovered and accounted for in these types of divorces and the high stakes involved, it's important to turn to a seasoned legal professional.

Source:, "Checklist: Dividing Marital Property," Feb. 26, 2016

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