High net-worth divorces can involve more complications than a typical divorce. There may be multiple properties or investment portfolios that you own, as well as offshore accounts and other valuable assets that need to be divided.
It is best to hire a Texas divorce attorney who specializes in high-net-worth divorces and can help you use Texas’ divorce laws to your advantage.
Here are 10 things that you should know about Texas high net-worth divorces.
1. It Can Take Longer to Get a High Asset Divorce
A typical divorce takes anywhere from six months to two and a half years. However, divorces with more assets may take longer. It can take some time to find all the assets involved in a high-asset divorce, especially if one party is trying to hide them. In a high-net-worth divorce, you shouldn’t rush. Instead, let your lawyer handle the divorce process calmly and you can focus on living your life.
2. Spouses Often Try to Hide Assets
The most contentious issue in high-net-worth divorces is often the division of assets and liabilities. You must disclose all assets. The court will not accept any attempt to conceal assets. Instead, make a strong argument about why certain assets should be kept for you. In exchange for what they might want, you can negotiate possession with your ex.
3. You are Entitled to a “Just and Fair” Division of Community Property
Texas considers all property owned by spouses in the course of a marriage as community property unless it is proven not to be. Both spouses are entitled to the same amount of community property during the marriage. After the marriage ends, the property does not have to be split equally. The court will distribute community property in a “just” and fair manner. A divorce lawyer can help you make arguments about how your assets should be divided.
4. Businesses are Often Considered Community Property
To help the family business grow over time, it’s typical for both spouses to contribute. A business is considered community property unless it is proven not to be, regardless of who has grown the business. Dividing a business can be difficult and require a valuation. This often requires financial experts’ assistance. In the division of property, both spouses’ interests will be taken into consideration.
5. Alimony Will Consider All of the Income from the Payor
Many people with higher-than-average earnings have multiple streams of income. It can be difficult to calculate a fair amount for alimony (also known as “spousal maintenance”) because of this. Some spouses don’t know where their partner earned his or her income. A lawyer who specializes in alimony can help you determine which earnings should be taken into consideration and whether alimony can be ordered.
6. Prenuptial Agreements are not Always Upheld
You might believe you know what will happen if you have a prenuptial arrangement and you are deciding to divorce your spouse. Prenuptial agreements may not be upheld every time. Some clauses may not apply in all cases. In other cases, the judge might believe that fraud or duress was involved. You should consult a divorce attorney if you have a prenuptial agreement.
7. For High Earners, There are Special Child Support Considerations
You may earn more than the amount automatically considered by Texas child support guidelines if you have a substantial income. Texas has special child support laws that are applicable to those with high incomes. An individual might be required to pay more support than what the guidelines require in certain circumstances. The parent with primary physical custody must show that the child’s needs exceed the amount stipulated in the statute. High-asset divorce lawyers can help you decide how much child support is appropriate for your particular situation.
8. The Court has the Discretion to Decide Which Assets Cannot be Divided
All community property in Texas is subject to “just-and-right” division during a divorce. This does not necessarily mean that all items must be valued and sold. The court might grant you ownership of valuable jewelry or art that you have acquired during your marriage. Your ex may get other property. The court is trying to divide things fairly, but not necessarily equally.
9. You Can Keep Sensitive Information Private During a Divorce
Although a divorce can be made public, your personal information may be kept private from the public. You can redact or hide financial statements so that no one looking into your divorce case has access to it. Be careful about what you put in court pleadings or other legal documents. When necessary, request redacted information.
10. How Do I Pay for an Attorney if My Spouse Closes Our Accounts?
Your spouse’s income during marriage is considered to be community property. You both can access the money if it goes into a joint bank account. A spouse might use manipulative tactics to close joint accounts or take money from them. You can ask the court for relief if this happens. This will allow you to receive your fair share of the money back. Your marital property account can be used to pay your legal fees.
Work With an Experienced High-Net Worth Divorce Lawyer at Bolton Law
You have a lot at stake if you’re facing divorce with more assets than others. A misunderstanding can cause you to lose everything. Bolton Law can help you navigate this process. We have years of experience helping high-earning individuals successfully navigate the divorce process in Texas. Call us today to schedule a consultation with a high-net-worth divorce attorney.