Divorce is usually complicated, but it may be particularly complicated when a couple has a high net worth. Property distribution and alimony issues may require the assistance of a family law attorney when one or both spouses have substantial assets. Doubts may arise about whether each spouse has accurately and truthfully disclosed his or her assets, and whether the court can fairly adjudicate an equitable distribution. However, wealthy families and families with children may also be concerned about keeping their financial condition private and the process of the divorce less acrimonious. They may not want private information disclosed at trial and in the public record. At the Martin Law Firm, our Naples divorce lawyers have the sensitivity and discretion necessary to help you move on with your life.Common Issues in a High Net Worth Divorce
Property division is one issue that can present particularly complicated questions in a high net worth divorce. When these cases are contested, emotions may run high. Florida is an equitable distribution state. This means that although the court will start from the presumption that marital property should be divided equally, it may adjust the distribution in the interest of what is equitable or fair.
The first step when considering questions of property division is to determine the character of the property—whether it is marital or non-marital. During this process, it is important to identify all assets and liabilities. To that end, both spouses are expected to provide financial disclosures to each other. It is not unusual for one or both spouses to have some concerns about whether the other spouse's disclosures are accurate and truthful. An experienced divorce attorney in the Naples area can look closely at the disclosures to determine whether it is possible that assets may have been hidden.
High net worth divorces often involve contentious issues related to expensive real estate, employment benefits, or the value of a business. It may be necessary to retain experts to value a home, a business, or pension plan benefits, and it may be appropriate to retain a forensic accountant to look at issues related to a company's books. An expert may also be necessary if a spouse's ability to earn income is at issue. Expert opinions are useful both during settlement negotiations and in the event that a divorce case goes to trial.
Another issue that can present a potential sticking point in divorces involving substantial assets and property is alimony or spousal support. When there is a significant gap between the incomes of spouses, the court may award alimony to the spouse with lower income. Florida Statutes section 61.08(1) permits several types of alimony, such as rehabilitative, durational, or permanent alimony. It can be awarded on a periodic or lump sum basis. Factors such as adultery or domestic violence may be considered when the court determines whether and how much to award. Any child support amount also will be taken into account when determining how much to award in alimony.Retain a Knowledgeable Divorce Lawyer in Naples
Located in Collier County, Florida, which is home to over 330,000 people, Naples is one of the wealthiest cities in the country, and this is reflected in real estate prices that are also among the most expensive in the country. The experienced Naples divorce attorneys at the Martin Law Firm will work hard to help you move toward the most favorable outcome possible. Understanding how stressful divorce can be, we treat our clients like family. Contact us toll-free at (844) 465-4357 or via our online form for a consultation with an alimony attorney or guidance in any other family law matter.