High Asset Divorce Attorney in Overland Park, Kansas
Divorce can be a complicated process, and this holds especially true in high-asset divorce cases. If you are a high-asset individual and have been served with papers or are contemplating divorce, call me, Ron Rundberg, at Rundberg Law, LLC in Overland Park.
My law firm handles family law cases in both Kansas and Missouri, and the following applies to both Missouri and Kansas.
Asset Division in Kansas and Missouri
Kansas and Missouri are “equitable distribution” states. A divorcing couple’s assets are deemed either “separate” (that is, property owned or transferred to one spouse before the marriage) or “marital” (property acquired during the marriage, except for certain inheritances and gifts in one spouse’s name only), with marital property subject to division.
The court decides how to split a divorcing couple’s marital property on a case-by-case basis depending on a number of factors. These factors can include the length of the marriage, the age of the spouses, each spouse’s earning power, and which spouse (if any) will receive alimony. It is important to note that “equitable” does not mean “equal.” Assets will be divided according to the above factors and any other factors that the court deems relevant.
That said, couples with high net worth who divorce may face a unique set of issues when it comes to asset division.
Issues in a High-Asset Divorce
Tax implications are likely to be more complicated in high-asset divorce cases. For example, a spouse may have assets, such as homes, in several countries. Tax issues may arise when such assets are split.
Valuation of a Business or Other Assets
If either spouse owns a high-value business or other items of high value such as antiques or jewelry, an appraiser might be needed to determine their value. In addition, if a certain asset originally designated as separate property has gained value during the marriage, that increase in value may be deemed marital property and may be subject to division.
As outlined above, a high-value business may need an appraiser to determine the value. However, that evaluation is likely to be complicated, necessitating examination of not only items such as debts and accounts receivable but intangible considerations such as the goodwill engendered by the company. Other assets, such as investments and intellectual property, may also necessitate complex evaluations. It is important to speak to your attorney about finding an expert who will evaluate your assets fairly.
Hidden Assets: Why a Forensic Accountant Is Important
If it is suspected that either spouse has been hiding or intends to hide assets, one spouse may want to hire a forensic accountant to study the other spouse’s financial records. They will search for hidden bank accounts and property and other assets, such as cryptocurrency, that the other spouse may have tried to keep secret. The forensic accountant can also determine whether a piece of property is separate or marital.
It is essential to have an expert forensic accountant on your side in a potential hidden-asset situation, as well as any acrimonious high-asset divorce. Many forensic accountants have useful contacts with computer forensic specialists and private investigators to assist you in your case. Most important of all, a forensic accountant will be able to work with your attorney to gather documents and other evidence from your spouse and will be able to testify in court or at other hearings.
How to Prepare for a High-Asset Divorce
First, it is crucial to hire an expert family law attorney to help you in your case, as well as a forensic accountant if needed. Your attorney can advise you on hiring an appraiser to get an accurate valuation of important assets. Second, make sure your attorney and the forensic accountant have everything they may need to present evidence to the court, such as tax returns, deeds to property, and other important paperwork. Your attorney and your forensic accountant will work diligently with the goal of helping you receive the share of the assets that you deserve.
High-Asset Divorce Attorney Serving Overland Park, Kansas
Whether you have been served with papers or are thinking of filing for divorce, I am here to help. My dedication to helping families through difficult times and my extensive experience with acrimonious opposing parties will ensure that you receive the best service and support during your divorce. Call me, Ron Rundberg, at Rundberg Law, LLC, serving Overland Park, Kansas, as well as the rest of Johnson County, Kansas, and the Kansas City, Missouri, area.