Understanding the differences in high-net-worth divorces

While a good deal of stress may accompany any divorce, the types of asset divisions and financial choices made in a high-net-worth divorce differ greatly from other divorces. If your New York divorce involves at least one spouse people with a high net worth, you should keep these tips in mind to understand how these differences may affect your financial future.

High net worth definition

In the state of New York, a divorce qualifies as high net worth if it involves assets of at least one million dollars. This amount refers to the total net liquid assets between you and your spouse.

Complex asset division

Typically, high-net-worth divorces involve complex asset division. The presence of a variety of different types of assets or the difficulty that the court may face in dividing them up makes the divisions of certain assets in a divorce more complex than others.

Complex asset division may include the following types of properties:

• Multiple real estate properties

• Varied investment portfolio

• Business ownership

Equitable distribution

New York operates under the law of equitable distribution. This means that your assets must be divided fairly for both parties. An equitable distribution does not guarantee a 50/50 division of property.

During the distribution of your assets, the court will consider any prenuptial agreement and property that either spouse owned prior to the marriage. Otherwise, the court must divide your assets according to equitable distribution, including:

• Pension plans

• Stock options

• Professional licenses

• Trusts

• Limited partnerships

• Investment portfolios

• Art collections

Protecting both you and your spouse

The divorce process may seem complex when you possess a high net worth. But New York rules divorce rules recognize the immense wealth involved and strive to make sure that the wealth gets divided fairly.