After child-related topics, the division of assets is often the most contentious and important issue that divorcing couples must resolve. When couples own a lot of high value property, this process becomes even more complex. Dividing high-end assets can also become much more emotional, and it can create a scenario where things turn ugly. It is important that you know how to make sure that your asset division rights are fully protected. If high value property is an issue in your divorce, do not go it alone. Please contact an experienced attorney for high-end assets divorce help in Salt Lake City.
Property Division in Utah Divorces
In Utah, the courts are required to divide assets in an ‘equitable’ manner. Equitable distribution is all about fairness. It is important to recognize that equitable distribution does not mean equal distribution. Utah divorce law gives the courts the power to divide assets in a manner that is ‘reasonable and necessary’. To determine what reasonable and necessary entails, the courts will look at a number of factors, including:
- How long the marriage lasted;
- The age, health and financial needs of each partner;
- The assets each partner brought into the marriage;
- The earning capacity of the partners going forward; and
- Any other factor that is relevant to come to a fair conclusion.
It is clear that the reasonable and necessary standard gives judges considerable latitude to make a decision. This makes it important that you hire an experienced Salt Lake City divorce attorney whenever any sort of asset division dispute arises. However, it is especially important when high-end assets are involved, there is so much more at stake.
Advice for Dealing with High-end Assets
- Identify assets: The first thing you need to do is to make sure you have a full understanding of all of your marital assets. Preparation is the key; you should take inventory of everything you own. This includes all professional assets, any stocks and bonds, all retirement accounts, any trusts, real estate, any debts, and even valuable personal property such as jewelry.
- Get valuations: After all assets have been identified, everything needs a reliable valuation. For some assets the valuation process will be straightforward. For example, it is easy to determine the fair market value of an investment account. But, for other assets, such as a professional practice that is carrying debt, a reliable valuation will take more effort. Still, it is absolutely necessary that you know precisely how much each asset is worth.
- Put together a balance sheet: One you identify assets, and determine the value, you should put together a detailed balance sheet. This will give you a big picture understanding of how to approach asset division. The benefits are twofold: first, when you truly understand the big picture, you will be in a much better position to protect yourself and get a fair division of assets from the divorce. Second, and just as important, this process can go along way towards making your divorce less ugly. It will take some of the potential for dispute out of the process and let you identify any potential problem areas as soon as possible.
Contact An Experienced Salt Lake City Divorce Lawyer
If your marriage is nearing an end, you need to be proactive. Experienced divorce lawyer Jill L. Coil can help. At CoilLaw, LLC, a family law firm in Salt Lake City, we will make sure that your right to a fair distribution of property is fully protected. Contact us today at (801) 884-3775 to set up an initial legal consultation.
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Sandy, Utah 84094
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