Coates & Davenport, P.C.

High Asset Divorce Archives

Which spouse will own the family pet after divorce?

You and your spouse make the difficult decision to divorce. You simply cannot get along, and you both feel that separation would benefit your individual lives. Unfortunately, after you married, you adopted a puppy. The dog is an integral part of both of your lives, but who will keep the pet after Hawaii court finalizes your divorce proceedings?

Are postnuptial agreements an option for married spouses?

When a couple is engaged and planning their dream wedding, they may not wish to dwell on negative topics. This may include putting off executing a prenuptial agreement. While they may recognize that a prenuptial agreement can be a valuable part of any marriage, they may simply be too busy or too preoccupied to execute one before their wedding day.

A high-asset divorce need not derail one's retirement plans

Virginia is an equitable distribution state, meaning that marital property will be divided fairly (although not necessarily equally). Retirement accounts may be considered marital assets that are subject to division, meaning that it is possible for a person to walk away from a divorce -- even a high-asset divorce -- with a significant deficit in their retirement savings.

A high asset divorce can bring financial surprises

According to a survey conducted by Worthy, an Internet marketplace, 46 percent of female respondents who were contemplating divorce, were in the process of divorcing or were currently divorced reported that they experienced unexpected financial issues due to the split. This is significant, especially in a high asset divorce where financial issues may take center stage. It is important for spouses of either sex in Virginia to anticipate the following financial issues they may experience due to divorce, so they can sufficiently prepare for them.

Virginia courts may consider certain factors in property division

Some of the hardest decisions a couple going through a divorce in Virginia will have to make have to do with dividing their property. After all, over the course of their marriage they may have accumulated many highly-valuable assets such as a house, vacation home, artwork, investments, retirement accounts and more. Moreover, there are assets that may not necessarily have a high retail value, but have a high sentimental value. While some couples are able to work out their property division issues on their own, others may need to look to the court to determine how some or all of their property will be divided.

Avoid these behaviors in a high-asset divorce

When a wealthy couple in Virginia decides to divorce, there is so much at stake. The couple may have spent years or even decades amassing a substantial amount of financial wealth. They may own several pieces of real estate, they both may have a lot of funds held in retirement plans, they may have valuable stocks and investments and more. When it comes to divorce, even if both partners are on the same page in that they want to end their marriage, rancor can still be present and disagreements can occur throughout the divorce process. However, there are some behaviors a spouse should avoid doing, especially in a high-asset divorce.

Can one keep separate property from becoming marital property?

Some couples in Richmond who have significant wealth going into a marriage will execute a prenuptial agreement to protect their separate financial interests in the event of a divorce. However, some high-asset couples may have thought a prenup was unromantic or unnecessary, and did not execute one before walking down the aisle. While everyone thinks their marriage will last "until death do us part," the fact of the matter is that many marriages will end well before that. Even in the absence of a prenup, there are steps couples can take to protect their financial interests should they divorce.

What should one consider when it comes to divorce and retirement?

A marriage can last a long time, but even couples in Virginia who have been married for decades can one day decide to divorce. But, older couples will have to keep retirement in mind when it comes to property division. This is especially true in a high asset divorce.

What types of spousal support may be awarded in Virginia?

Sometimes, a married couple decides that one spouse will stay at home to care for the family, while the other spouse pursues a career. The working spouse is able to "climb the corporate ladder" and ultimately sees career success that leaves the couple well off financially.

Property division: Marital property versus separate property

In Virginia and in most other states in the nation, when a couple is seeking a divorce their property will be divided per equitable distribution. When property is divided in this manner, a judge will decide what would be fair to both parties, meaning that it may not be an exact 50/50 split. In addition, only marital property will be subject to property division; separate property may be kept by the party that owns it. Therefore, it pays to have an understanding of what constitutes marital property and what constitutes separate property.  In Virginia, the burden of proving property is separate is on the party claiming that it is separate - It is presumed that all property acquired during the marriage is marital.

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