How does increased property value impact a high-asset divorce?
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How does increased property value impact a high-asset divorce?

| Mar 18, 2021 | divorce

Any Pennsylvania divorce can have its difficult moments. Even couples who are on relatively good terms are getting divorced for a reason and there are bound to be aspects of the case that are in dispute. If the sides are acrimonious, there is likely to be rampant disagreement. This is often compounded when dealing with property division for people who have vast assets. In many instances, non-marital property increased in value after the marriage took place, complicating matters further. When dealing with the measurement and determination of these items as part of the divorce case, it is important to have guidance.

How is increase in value of non-marital property addressed?

The law has certain requirements with the increased value of non-marital property. Any property that was acquired while the couple was married is considered marital property. If there was non-marital property such as a business that one spouse owned beforehand and it increased in value after the marriage, that increase could be considered marital property. As part of the property division in the divorce, the rise in value will be measured from the date of the marriage to when the couple parted ways or at a date in which the hearing to determine how to equitably distribute the property can be held.

When trying to achieve equitable distribution, it does not mean that the property’s value will be split in half. This is a common misconception. The goal is to fairly distribute the property. With property division, the court will take certain factors into account such as how long the couple was married; if either was married previously; income sources; age; heath; contribution to the increase in value of property or earning power of the other spouse; the standard of living from the marriage; and the value of the property.

Dividing property in a high-asset divorce can be complex

If a business became exponentially successful after the marriage, this will generally be handled as part of property distribution even though the business was non-marital property prior to the marriage. This is true for other types of property as well. For people who have substantial assets and are concerned as to how its status as marital or non-marital property will impact the high-asset divorce, it is imperative to have legal help from the start. Consulting with professionals experienced in these cases may be beneficial.