Truth be told, you were probably not looking forward to the day, when you have to search for answers of how to handle your divorce. Divorces, yet common, are individually challenging processes both financially and mentally. More often than not, emotions run the show and this is always a recipe for disaster, especially in the long run. Every sip of wine is followed by a spit against your spouse, every friend has some invaluable advice to give and anger seems to be your best friend around these days.
The TO-DO list of preparations and considerations has piled-up and you are finding yourself often banging your head against the wall, before the process has even begun. There are the children, the contracts, the house, the car, and the occasional vase, which your aunt gifted you. You might just go off the deep end to keep this monumental piece! At all cost, that is.
The mess of divorce gets even bigger, when a high net worth couple is splitting and often spitting. The complexity of a divorce increases in those cases, as there are now valuable items, investments, profits, international properties etc. involved. There are a lot of mistakes made specifically in high net worth divorce cases, which haunt and hurt couples further down the line in life, causing this “memory” to refuse to disappear.
So what are the steps to consider, in order to protect yourself and ensure you are not opening yourself up for unnecessary issues in the process?
- Get yourself a good lawyer – By good, one doesn’t necessarily mean one of the big guns, though it might be. Legal representation can add enormous value for properly executing your divorce, regardless how good of terms spouses might be on. A divorce lawyer, or a team, will have the chance to consider all doors, where attack or problems might crawl through.
- Forensic Accountant – Often with high-profile or high net worth divorces, there are stock options and assets, not yet fully matured, intellectual property or personal business to be considered. Assigning a value to those is vital for proper cash flow assessment, so you might want to add a CPA, tax lawyer or deferred adjudication Dallas professional to your team.
- Custody Experts – when children are involved, in many cases it gets even messier than just splitting the dough. Regardless of children’s age, a specialist must be involved to determine what would serve their best interests first and foremost, and advise on steps and actions to be taken. Often in a situation, where one of the spouses has a substantially higher income than the other, children get “shipped” to the castle of money, without proper evaluation of living conditions, emotional support and consistency.
- Financial or Tax Advisor? Maybe both – Tax Consideration is often omitted in high net worth divorces. Looking at the big picture of how alimony or asset taxation affects your bottom line, allows for preventing certain unfavorable implications down the road, once the divorce is finalized.
- Estate professional, real estate expert, business or corporate lawyer – depending on each specific situation, it is imperative to consider having a diverse team of experts to support you through the process. Your primary divorce lawyer will not be able to cover all angles of your properties, assets, business relations, financial considerations, investments, employability etc. Don’t leave anything up to chance.
- Stacking cash in jars? – Not the best way to go. Hiding assets or transferring funds to an outside party is considered fraudulent, and will pose enormous short and long term impact on the individual.
Facing the “payment” of long term dues, based upon not properly handled divorce process, will impact your financial and mental state undeniably. In any divorce case, often parties agree to do just about anything at some point, only to be get done and over with.
Getting the proper help and assistance will ensure your, and your family protection in the best way possible, and give you a chance to continue your life a bit saner after the process is completed.
Allowing anger and guilt get in the way is a sure thing to backfire either during the proceedings or further down the line. Except getting the legal and financial support, ensure you are placing attention and importance on your emotional, mental and physical state during challenging times. Family and friends are a great shoulder to lean on, though contacting an outside party might prove to be just the right step.
Make your high net worth divorce worth the effort!