W. Tyler Moore, PC

Watch out for these high value divorce pitfalls

Any divorce is an emotional affair, but the stakes are higher when it's a high-asset divorce. When couples in Texas have substantial assets to divide and the issue of spousal support is on the table, neither party wants to leave the divorce process feeling short-changed. However, it is important to think with a clear head. An attorney can be a great asset in helping their clients look at their divorce legal issues objectively, so they can reach a result that is fair.

First, sometimes in the heat of a break-up, people just want out. Sometimes, people rush into decisions on issues just to get them out of the way, so they can move on with their lives. However, this could lead to unsatisfactory results that hurt a person in the long-run after the dust has settled and they find themselves single.

Sometimes, a person feels guilty about the divorce (whether they should or not). Therefore, they may relinquish more than what is fair. However, this, too, can hurt a person in the long-run, particularly financially. Similarly, while it is normal to feel angry at some point during the divorce process, making decisions just to get revenge on one's ex can lead to imprudent decisions and a poor relationship moving forward.

Especially in a high-asset divorce, a spouse may be tempted to hide assets. They may do so to get the upper hand on their ex when it comes to property division and other financial issues. However, if a thorough investigation of one's assets and one's partner's assets is made (and it should be), the hidden assets will be uncovered. The spouse who hid them will lose credibility, which could leave them disadvantaged.

Similarly, per law, spouses in a divorce need to execute a financial affidavit. This is an inventory of all the marital assets and liabilities. While it may take time to do this properly, if a party fails to execute a financial affidavit or leaves out information, they may end up with more debts or may relinquish their right to spousal support unnecessarily.

While a high value divorce is an emotional affair, parties must think with a clear head. This is when having an attorney can be of use. An attorney can assess the situation and assist their client in coming up with a result that is appropriate.

Source: CNN, "Top 10 Mistakes in High Net Worth Divorces," Joey Battah, Jan. 10, 2014

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