Prevent Unnecessary Investment Loss During Divorce
The division of assets in a divorce can be extremely complex and take a toll on both parties over time. With a wide array of elements to be considered in a marital property division settlement, the importance of due diligence and proper professional guidance cannot be stressed enough. Texas couples facing a divorce should understand some of the key ways that they can avoid losing out on valuable portions of their assets.
Some common assets requiring division
From which spouse gets the special crystal vase to which spouse gets the house, the myriad of assets about which to make decisions can be overwhelming and can even be overlooked if you are not careful. Some examples of assets not always top of mind to some spouses but that do require division include:
- Pension funds or retirement accounts
- Investment real estate
- Vacation properties
- Family business or interest in a business
- Stocks or other investments
Each of these types of assets will require appropriate valuation that will then be used to determine the ultimate divorce settlement based upon Texas’s community property laws.
Let percentages be your guide
When you are involved in a complex property division settlement during a divorce, any marital asset which has a value that can fluctuate due to market conditions requires special care. All such items should be divided in terms of what percentage of the value each spouse is to receive. You should never identify divisions in terms of exact dollar amounts for an asset that can change in value.
Imagine that you have a retirement account and on the day you assess its value for purposes of your divorce settlement, it is valued at $200,000 and you and your spouse agree to each receive $100,000 from that account. It is quite possible that some time will elapse between the original date of valuation and the date that a funds transfer is made actually dividing the account.
During that time, the market could have suffered greatly and your originally $200,000 account is now worth only $100,000. You have a problem. Depending upon specific laws, it is highly possible that the original account owner would have to honor the agreement and pay the other spouse his or her originally intended $100,000. That means that the first spouse receives nothing from the investment.
If, however, the agreement was to split the account in half with no specification of dollar amounts, each party would receive $50,000 based upon the new valuation.
Seek proper guidance
Divorcing Texas couples, especially those with multiple financial assets, should always consult a professional family law attorney. Ensuring that you have the experience of someone who knows the nuances of the law is the best way to protect your interests and your assets.