Chester County High Asset and Complex Divorce Attorneys
Dealing With a Complex Divorce in Chester County, PA?
Let's face it - all divorces are complex. You could own very little property, have no major assets and still end up in an incredibly intricate proceeding. Why? Untangling two individuals who have spent any amount of time together - whether it is two months or two decades - is an emotional, physical, and financial balancing act. It is fraught with delicate maneuvering and subtle negotiation, all of which can mean the world to one or both individuals, no matter how small the item or topic in question might be. In fact, if you are in the process of getting a divorce, it is safe to say that mostly everything in your life at the moment is complex - relatively speaking.
However, at the Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz, P.C., we recognize that in some marriages – especially ones that share a significant amount of money, debt, and property – complexity is more than a relative notion. In such cases, an experienced Chester County lawyer who fully understands high-asset divorce is imperative.
If you are facing such a split, we highly recommend contacting our office to schedule a review of your case as soon as possible. Attorney Sheryl Rentz has decades of experience assisting individuals in difficult proceedings. No matter how difficult the circumstances you may find yourself in, the Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz, P.C., can provide the support you need. Call our office today at (610) 645-0100 to discuss your case in a free consultation.
What Does High Asset Mean?
It is important to understand that “high asset” does not mean wealthy. Instead, it refers to when a couple has a significant amount of property, debt, or assets that can be difficult to untangle during a divorce. For example, student loans, credit card bills, and mortgages all need to be divided after a marriage ends in order to ensure that both parties pay their fair share. Alternatively, if one spouse started a business during a marriage, then it can be considered community property and be subject to property division.
It is extremely common for everyday couples to begin the process of dividing their property before discovering that the situation is much more complex. There are a number of hard questions that must be tackled when high-end investments, long-term debt, and complex assets are being divided. Such as, who will retain ownership of the business? How will the pensions of either individual be split? What will happen to the various real estate and stock investments? Who will be dealing with the mortgage or high-interest loans after the divorce? Each one of these questions requires a thorough investigation and even more detailed answers before a final decision can be rendered.
The types of property that can be divided in a Chester County divorce can include, but are not limited to:
- Real estate
- Insurance policies
- Retirement benefits
- 401(k) plans
- Student loans
- Credit card debt
Understanding Pennsylvania’s Divorce Laws
Chester County family law courts follow Pennsylvania’s divorce laws, which divide assets based on equitable distribution. Despite common assumptions, this does not mean a divorce is 50/50, but that the court will try to reach an agreement that it is fair to both parties. When you add in investments, pension plans, student loans, and other assets, this process can be complex. For example, if one spouse has sole custody of a child or is required to pay support as the result of a previous marriage, then the court may adjust the amount of property he receives based on the situation. Unless you have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, your case will need to be handled with extreme diligence.
There are 13 factors that a Chester County court will consider when dividing marital property, including:
- How long you were married
- If you had a previous marriage
- Your age, health, job, skills, needs, and sources of income
- If you contributed to your spouse’s education or vocational training
- Your ability to increase your income
- Your current sources of income, including health insurance and retirement policies
- Your contributions to your household, including maintaining a home or acquiring additional property, such as furniture or antiques
- Any property that has been set aside
- Your standard of living during your marriage
- Your current standard of living
- How taxes will impact your assets
- The costs of transferring, selling, or liquidating assets
- If you have custody of any minor children
All of your assets and liabilities, including any debt, benefits, and real estate, will need to be reviewed to determine how it can be divided based on these factors, which can also impact the amount of alimony, spousal support, and child support paid after a marriage ends. In order to ensure you receive a fair share, you will need to have your case reviewed by an experienced attorney.
How to Begin Untangling Your Assets
When it comes to complex divorce proceedings, we believe the devil is in the details. This becomes especially true when there are significant assets on the table that need to be reviewed and appropriately divided. At the Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz, we take great pains in our investigation and evaluation of what is owned, what is due, and where the valuables are located. Our experts are on the case, day one, utilizing one or more of the following procedures:
Discovery of Assets: Believe it or not, some divorcing couples actually attempt to hide property and earnings from one another. We won't let this happen. Our team of investigators will dig into every available record and account to secure what is rightfully yours. By thoroughly reviewing your financial records and any premarital agreements, we can determine what property is considered marital and what is considered separate in your divorce.
Asset Valuation: Each piece of “property” will need to receive a fair market value, including health insurance policies, furniture, jewelry, loans, and real estate. During this process, we will work closely with financial experts to determine the monetary value of your property so that it can be divided properly. We will also need to review the potential tax implications of your property.
Business Valuation: Own a successful business with your spouse that is now a contentious part of your divorce? The only way to secure what is rightfully yours is through a complete business valuation. This is a time-consuming process that our team takes very seriously; we pour over tax documents, salary reports, expense records, and profit tables to ensure you are receiving your fair share.
Property Division: While this is a standard motion in all divorce actions, it becomes far more complicated when there is a high-net worth involved. Real estate holdings, luxury items, savings accounts, stock options, and business investments must all be carefully reviewed. This cannot be left to just any divorce lawyer; it requires a counselor with keen insight and a skilled hand to guide the negotiations.
Superior Representation from Chester County Complex Divorce Lawyers When You Need It Most
At the Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz P.C., we understand that no matter what your particular circumstance, divorce is a complex undertaking. But if you are facing extraordinary issues concerning financial planning, long term investments, and a complicated division of assets, you need a knowledgeable Chester County family law attorney who can successfully fight on your behalf from start to finish. Get the help you need from our experienced family law firm - call (610) 645-0100 for more information.