Bridgeport, WV Divorce Attorneys
Aggressive High Asset Divorce Lawyers Serving West Virginia
Bridgeport is a city that combines the comforts of a suburb with a sense of community that is distinct in small towns. Known for its highly rated schools, diverse communities, and safe neighborhoods, Bridgeport offers a higher standard of living compared to many other cities of similar size and population in West Virginia.
The divorce rate in Bridgeport is not as high as it is in other cities like Moundsville or South Charleston. Still, divorces do happen, as people choose to end their marriages for various reasons.
If you are a resident of Bridgeport who is planning to file for divorce and if you own significant assets, it’s important to choose the right divorce lawyer to represent you. High-asset divorces tend to be extremely complicated in nature and require the expertise of an experienced Bridgeport divorce lawyer who is experienced in handling these types of cases.
At Hardy Pence PLLC, we have over 100 years of combined experience in handling divorce cases and have a track record of legal success that few other family law firms in West Virginia can boast of. Over the years, we have handled several high-asset divorces and we are aware of the challenges involved in these cases. We can protect your rights as a spouse and as a parent, give your case the individualized attention it deserves, and take all possible steps to achieve an outcome that is in your best interest.
Challenges Involved in High Asset Divorces
The division of marital property is one of the most challenging and contentious issues in divorce cases. In a high-asset divorce, the process of dividing marital property can be even more complicated – due to the sheer amount of assets to be divided and their value.
High-asset divorces often involve the division and distribution of a wide range of assets including:
- Residential and commercial real estate properties.
- Stock holdings and investments in other financial securities.
- Retirement funds.
- Ownership interests in businesses.
- Artwork and antiques.
- Patents, literary rights, and intellectual properties.
- Cars, recreational vehicles, boats, and luxury yachts.
Valuation of Marital Property
One of the biggest challenges involved in high-asset divorces is the valuation of marital property – particularly businesses. It’s because predicting the trajectory of a business is not easy. A wide range of factors including operating costs, debt, annual revenue, and projected growth is to be taken into account while evaluating a business.
Things can get even more complicated if your spouse claims an ownership interest in your business. For example, if your spouse made non-monetary contributions to your business, which you started when you were single, they can make the case that your business became more valuable due to their contributions and they deserve their fair share.
Applicability of Laws
Dividing the funds into a bank account or a retirement account is a fairly simple process. On the other hand, valuing and dividing interstate and international assets like trusts and real estate properties in other countries can be an extremely complicated task, as a large number of state, federal, and international laws and regulations might be applicable in these situations.
Financial Interests of Family Members
Wealthy families tend to set up trusts to provide for their family members and descendants. The outcome of the divorce might impact these people, as they have a direct financial stake in the assets that are to be divided. The more people are involved, the more complex the process of marital asset division is likely to be.
Spouses Hiding Assets from Each Other
This is one of the most problematic parts of a high-asset divorce. When assets worth millions of dollars are involved, couples might go to any extent to carve out more than their fair share of assets. It’s particularly common in contested and fault-based divorces, which tend to be acrimonious in nature and the spouses often try to hurt each other purely out of spite.
Splitting, transferring, and selling high-value assets can have enormous tax consequences. It is important to make sure that the marital assets are divided equitably – from a valuation perspective as well as from a tax perspective. Otherwise, one of the spouses might end up bearing the tax burden, which is unfair.
Calculation of Spousal Support and Child Support
The guidelines set for calculating spousal support and child support are usually not applicable to high-asset divorces, as the income of the couples involved tends to be far greater than the income threshold these guidelines are based on.
Moreover, children of high net-worth individuals tend to have unique and expensive needs that other children do not. While calculating spousal and child support, all these factors need to be taken into account.
Mistakes to Avoid in a High Net Worth Divorce in Bridgeport, WV
- Do not try to transfer or hide your assets. If you suspect your spouse is doing so, let your attorney know immediately.
- Do not take any legal advice from your family members or friends. While they might have your best interests at heart, they are not qualified or trained to offer divorce-related legal advice. The only person you should listen to and seek advice from is your divorce lawyer.
- Do not believe that litigation is the only way to protect your assets. Even in a high-asset divorce, negotiation is still the best way to achieve a positive outcome. Litigation should generally be the last resort regardless of other factors.
Choose Reputable Bridgeport, WV High Asset Divorce Lawyers to Protect Your Rights
At Hardy Pence PLLC, we know that high-asset divorces often involve issues that do not arise in other divorces. Owing to our extensive experience in handling high-net-worth divorces, we can anticipate and prepare for these issues and contingencies in advance and make the divorce process less stressful for you.
We can identify and evaluate your marital assets carefully and take steps to protect your rights, interests, and assets at every step of the way. Call us today at 304-345-7250 or fill out our online contact form to talk to one of our attorneys.