Divorce: What High Net Worth Couples Should Know

Generally speaking, no one wants to get divorced. For the most part, couples enter marriages with vivid dreams of happily ever after, not visions of acrimonious battles over money, property, custody, and so on.

For couples with a higher net worth, navigating the divorce landscape can be especially treacherous given how much is on the line and how important it is to get things right. If you find yourself in this type of situation, here are a few things you should know.

Court Should Be Your Last Resort

While the media has made divorce court seem inevitable, that needn't be the case. While some situations require that the matter reach the courts, there are often ways to find solutions without having to escalate to this level.

When it comes to high earners, going to court can spell disaster for your finances. The process is costly and often results in the loss of a certain degree of control. Whereas methods of alternative dispute resolution encourage spouses to have their voices heard, going to court means relying on lawyers and judges to make key decisions.

Tune Up Your Prenup

Marriage agreements, often referred to as prenups, are a way to help ensure that in the event of a divorce, matters regarding the division of assets are addressed. Depending on the nature of your marriage contract, there is a chance that the court could choose not to enforce it.

Having your marriage contract reviewed by an experienced lawyer can help prevent unexpected roadblocks and help ensure a smooth transition by protecting assets, property, and other important matters.

In situations where a separating couple wishes to enter an agreement following the end of their relationship, exploring the option of a post-nuptial agreement, or separation agreement, could be a wise decision.

Know Your Worth (And Your Partner's Too)

This is where things can get especially tricky. With high net worth couples, ascertaining each spouse's net worth can be challenging. Depending on your financial situation, it may be necessary to get help from financial experts such as forensic accountants and valuators.

Child support, and in some cases, spousal support, is determined based on income, making it essential to present a clear, accurate number. For some people, having a pro do the math is the only way to protect themselves.

While couples with high assets may not have to contend with some of the issues that trouble others going through a divorce, theirs is a situation that poses a unique set of challenges. Working with a lawyer who recognizes the needs of a high net worth couple is important, as is ensuring that you take the time to plan and prepare accordingly. 

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