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When the Wealthy Divorce – High Net Worth Divorces in Chicago

When the Wealthy Divorce – High Net Worth Divorces in Chicago

By: M. Scott Gordon

When wealthy Chicago area residents decide to divorce, they face a number of complications that don’t typically accompany a middle-class divorce.  What’s so different about a high net worth divorce?  In short, when substantial assets are at play in a divorce, the tension can run high, and that animosity can move into other realms of the proceedings.  To be sure, contentious battles over property division can result in antagonistic debates over child custody and visitation in a high net worth divorce.

When you’re dealing with a divorce, you’re already dealing with significant emotional stress.  An experienced Chicago high net worth divorce attorney can answer your questions about managing wealth during divorce.

Property Division and Substantial Wealth

A divorce involving wealthy Chicago spouses can mean that property division becomes very complicated.  To be sure, high net worth divorces often involve marital assets that most middle-class couples don’t have to deal with when they file for divorce.  For instance, high asset divorce proceedings can include some of the following types of property:

  • Multiple business interests;
  • Multiple bank accounts;
  • Investments, including stocks and trusts;
  • Real estate holdings;
  • Expensive property such as automobiles and yachts;
  • Retirement accounts; and
  • Overseas property holdings.

Keep in mind that Illinois courts divide marital property “equitably” during a divorce.  This doesn’t mean that the property will be divided equally, but rather that it will be divided in terms of what’s “fair”.  Having said that, high net worth individuals often have overlapping marital and non-marital property issues, which can be complicated to resolve.

Don’t Make Mistakes in High Net Worth Divorces

In high asset divorces, it’s extremely important to have an experienced Chicago  area divorce lawyer on your side.  In addition, wealthy couples need to attend to other considerations that likely won’t affect all divorcing couples.  According to a recent article from CNN, wealthy couples can avoid common mistakes during a high net worth divorce, including but not limited to some of the following:

  • Don’t hide assets: in high asset divorces, spouses can think it’s a good idea to transfer valuable property to another person, like a child, friend, or business partner.  However, spouses should keep in mind that practices like these are not allowed.  If the court identifies a fraudulent transfer, serious consequences can ensue.
  • Don’t forget about tax consequences: if you agree to retain certain assets or to pay a certain amount of alimony, it’s important to keep in mind how much money you’ll have after taxes.
  • Don’t forget to account for all of your assets and liabilities: your financial inventory will need to account for each and every one of your marital assets and liabilities.  Failing to include one of these items can leave you with debts that you shouldn’t have in an equitable distribution or can prevent you from acquiring assets that should be yours.

Contact an Experienced Chicago High Asset Divorce Lawyer

When the wealthy divorce, property division and other family law issues can become extremely complicated.  Contact an experienced Chicago high asset divorce lawyer at M. Scott Gordon & Associates today to talk about your case.