Wealth can be a relative feeling. You might feel like you are working yourself to the bone to bring home a comfortable salary, but still have a hard time making all your payments each month. Conversely, you might find yourself making a comparatively smaller salary than others in your community, but able to afford all of your expenses as well as some of life’s luxuries. When discussing marital assets in terms of divorce, whether you “feel wealthy” is not the issue. The dollar amount of your total net worth, whether based on concrete measurements or estimated based on future gains and development, is what determines whether your divorce is considered to be a high asset divorce.
The Securities Exchange Commission defines a high net worth individual as any individual whose net worth, either on his or her own or with a spouse, exceeds $1 million in liquid assets; any individual whose individual income has exceeded $200,000 in the past two years and can expect a similar income level in the coming years; or any individual whose combined income with his or her spouse has exceeded $300,000 in the past two years and can expect a similar income level in the coming years.
If you are a high net worth individual, working through your divorce with an attorney who has experience handling high asset divorces can have a significant impact on your settlement.
The Benefits of Working with a High Asset Divorce Attorney
In any divorce, dividing the couple’s shared assets is a key part of the process. This can be a fairly simple process if the couple has few marital assets. For couples who have significant marital assets, there are a few specific issues to keep in mind:
- Only jointly-held assets must be divided between the partners. Singly-held assets, such as gifts and assets obtained before entering the marriage, are not subject to divorce division. It can be easy for these lines to blur. For example, if one partner owned a home prior to entering the marriage but the other used a significant portion of his or her income to make improvements to the home;
- If the couple owns a business, how to value the business and divide it between the spouses;
- Determining spousal support in relationships where one partner earned significantly more than the other;
- Issues related to assets located overseas; and
- Working within the confines of a couple’s prenuptial agreement.
Many attorneys do not have experience handling the specific issues that high net worth individuals face during the divorce process. Without this experience, an attorney can easily mishandle a case, resulting in a significant monetary loss for his or her client.
High Asset Divorce Attorney in Winter Park
If you are a high net worth individual considering filing for divorce, contact an experienced Florida high asset divorce attorney. Call Sperling Ducker today at 407-645-3297 to get started on your case with our firm.