Securities & Exchange Commission defines a “high net worth” individual as a natural person who has individual net worth, or joint net worth with the person’s spouse, that exceeds $1 million, excluding the value of the primary residence of such person; or a natural person with income exceeding $200,000 in each of the two most recent years or joint income with a spouse exceeding $300,000 for those years and a reasonable expectation of the same income level in the current year. However, even if a person does not fit this definition yet has high income, multiple valuable assets, businesses, real estate holdings, stock portfolio, holds professional licenses, or otherwise maintains an expensive lifestyle, the divorce of such person may be qualified as “high net worth” divorce. It requires special skills and an understanding of how to properly divide and appraise assets and address specific concerns.
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First consideration for any person going through a divorce, especially one in which substantial assets are involved, is the time the divorce process can take. High net worth divorce matters require conducting financial auditing and evaluation of assets that can take a significant amount of time. Depositions and multiple court appearances may be required for the client to attend. It’s important to understand the time line and have realistic expectations about the divorce process. With the help of qualified high net worth divorce lawyers in NYC, a proper divorce strategy can be developed.
- Professional licenses or degrees held (which offer increased earning potential or “enhanced earning capacity”)
- Professional practices (valuation of the spouse’s partnership)
- Family businesses, closely held businesses or complicated business transactions
- Retirement assets such as stock options, IRAs, 401(k) accounts and pensions
- Real estate / real property
One of the most important document submitted to the court in a New York matrimonial proceeding is the Statement of Net Worth. It requires your most recent tax returns, pay stubs and full financial disclosure. It must be filed with the court that is handling your divorce. It also has to be sworn to under penalty of perjury and has to be certified by your NYC high net worth divorce lawyers. Statement of Net Worth provides the court a snapshot of your financial circumstances.One of the most important uses for a sworn Statement of Net Worth is to provide the court an estimate of the client’s lifestyle, needs, what the client can afford to pay in maintenance (alimony) or child support
Each of our NYC high net divorce lawyers is knowledgeable and financially savvy. Our divorce lawyers handling your case have experience working with many high net worth clients from various fields and professions. We will be thorough in obtaining and reviewing financial documents. In the courtroom, our high net worth divorce lawyers NYC will bring their experience in reading financial statements, obtaining useful expert reports, and cross examining financial experts.
An important distinction must be made between “separate property” and “marital property”. Separate property is not subject to division during a divorce. Marital property, on the other hand, is subject to equitable distribution. Appreciation of certain separate property can also be considered marital property and can be subject to division. Our high net worth divorce lawyers NYC can explain to you the “build-up method” and when to use it as opposed to the “excess earnings method” of valuation. The quality of your high net worth attorney’s background and experience makes a difference.
Many corporate executives often have employee stock options, which are often granted before they vest and can be exercised after the divorce was commenced. The forensic economic experts use the Black Scholes method to value these assets and figure out what spouses may be entitled to. The valuation and division of stock options in the divorce case is a very complicated process. Our high net worth divorce lawyers NYC can guid you and help you formulate the right strategy to protect your money and your assets.
Retirement plans are often a major component of the marital estate. The information required to decide how to divide the retirement assets can be obtained through pension plan evaluation. In marriages that include children, each spouse is entitled to receive 50% of any money earned by the retirement plan and assets earned during each year of the marriage. However, any money accumulated before marriage is not subject to division. Our team of high net divorce lawyers in NYC will help you understand your options and formulate a solid strategy.
In complicated divorce cases involving many financial assets, you should feel confident that your high net divorce lawyers NYC are with you every step of the way. Your divorce lawyers Important strategic decisions then need to be made on your behalf.
Our High Net Worth Divorce Lawyers NYC Are Ready To Help You.