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Considerations in a High Net Worth Divorce

Abrahamson Law Office June 13, 2024

Divorce is often a complicated and emotionally charged process. In high-net-worth divorces, the divorce process can become even more complex due to the significant assets and wealth involved. Understanding the unique aspects of a high-net-worth divorce can help you better prepare for divorce proceedings and navigate the process more efficiently and effectively. 

Therefore, it's crucial to take specific considerations into account to protect your financial interests and ensure a fair and equitable resolution. Due to the assets involved, it's advisable to consult with a family law attorney who has experience in asset protection and estate planning.  

At Abrahamson Law Office, we are dedicated to helping you resolve your high-net-worth divorce. Located in Omaha, Nebraska, we proudly serve clients throughout Sarpy County, Douglas County, Washington County, Saunders County (Wahoo), Otoe County (Nebraska City), and Dodge County (Fremont). 

Understanding High-Net-Worth Divorce in Nebraska

In Nebraska, high-net-worth divorces are governed by the same state statutes that apply to standard divorces. However, the stakes tend to be significantly higher, and the process is often more complicated. A high-net-worth divorce is characterized by the involvement of substantial financial assets and significant property interests. These divorces often include:  

  • Complex financial portfolios 

  • Multiple real estate holdings 

  • Business interests 

  • Diversified investment accounts 

  • Retirement plans 

  • Valuable personal property (e.g., art collections, fine jewelry, and luxury vehicles) 

Nebraska follows the principle of equitable distribution when it comes to the division of assets and liabilities. Thus, the division of these assets requires a meticulous examination of financial documents and valuations to ensure a fair and just allocation between the spouses.  

For individuals undergoing a high-net-worth divorce, it's important to consult a skilled divorce attorney who is experienced in handling substantial assets. By prioritizing thorough financial analysis and legal guidance, you can more effectively protect your interests and achieve a satisfactory resolution in a high-net-worth divorce. 

Considerations for High-Net-Worth Divorce in Nebraska

High-net-worth divorces involve significant financial stakes that can impact your long-term financial security. It is essential to thoroughly understand your financial situation and future projections before going through with the divorce. Some essential considerations you should take into account include the following. 

1. Identify and Protect Your Assets 

While identifying and protecting all your marital assets is crucial in any divorce, it is especially true for high-net-worth divorces. This includes identifying tangible assets such as physical property and bank accounts and intangible assets such as investments, retirement accounts, and membership interests in private businesses.  

In some cases, one spouse may try to hide assets or undervalue certain assets in an attempt to receive a more favorable settlement. Working with forensic accountants and a skilled divorce attorney can help you uncover any hidden assets and make sure that all assets are accurately identified and protected. 

2. Address Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements 

In high-net-worth divorces, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements can play a significant role in the outcome of the divorce. These legal documents outline how assets will be divided in case of a divorce, and they can provide valuable guidance when negotiating a settlement. However, these agreements must meet certain legal requirements to be considered valid and enforceable in court. 

For prenuptial agreements, both parties must fully disclose their assets and liabilities before signing the agreement. Additionally, both parties must enter into the agreement voluntarily and have sufficient time to review and consider its terms. If these requirements are not met, a prenuptial agreement may be invalidated. 

Similarly, postnuptial agreements must also meet certain legal standards to be considered valid. These include full disclosure of assets and liabilities, voluntary agreement from both parties, and a fair and reasonable division of assets. 

3. Determine the Value of Your Assets 

In a high-net-worth divorce, it's essential to accurately determine the value of all your assets. This can include real estate holdings, business interests, and investment accounts. Valuation experts such as appraisers or forensic accountants may be necessary to provide a thorough and accurate assessment of these assets to ensure equitable distribution in the divorce settlement. 

4. Understand the Complexity of Asset and Property Division  

Unlike standard divorces, where assets are often divided more equally, high-net-worth divorces require a more nuanced approach to asset and property division.

Under Nebraska law, the court will consider various factors to determine a fair and equitable distribution of assets, such as:  

  • Each spouse's contribution to the acquisition of the property 

  • Each spouse's age and health conditions 

  • Each spouse's earning capacity 

  • The value of each spouse's non-marital assets 

  • Any spousal support obligations 

Dividing complex assets requires careful consideration to ensure an equitable distribution that complies with Nebraska's equitable distribution laws. 

5. Consider Tax Obligations 

The division of assets in a high-net-worth divorce can have significant tax consequences. Certain assets can have significant future tax liabilities, such as retirement accounts or investment properties, which need to be factored into the settlement.  

Working with a tax consultant and financial advisor can help you understand the potential tax implications of your divorce settlement and help minimize any potential tax liabilities.  

6. Understand Spousal Support and Alimony Obligations 

In a high-net-worth divorce, spousal support and alimony can significantly impact both parties' finances. For determining alimony, the court will take into account various factors such as: 

  • The duration of the marriage 

  • The standard of living established during the marriage 

  • Each spouse's financial needs and earning capacity  

The court may also consider the contributions made by each spouse to the marriage, including economic sacrifices made for the spouse's career or education. Since substantial assets are involved, it's essential to develop an accurate understanding of each spouse's financial situation to make sure spousal support agreements are fair, equitable, and aligned with Nebraska law. 

How Can an Attorney Help?

Given the complexity of high-net-worth divorces, professional legal assistance can make a significant difference. At Abrahamson Law Office, our attorneys provide comprehensive and effective representation throughout the divorce process. Some of the services we offer include: 

  • Financial assessment: We collaborate with financial experts to accurately identify and value your marital assets and liabilities. 

  • Business protection strategies: We help develop and implement strategies to protect and fairly assess your business interests. 

  • Investment division: We create comprehensive plans for dividing investment portfolios to promote tax efficiency and financial stability. 

  • Spousal support arrangements: We advocate for spousal support arrangements that reflect the lifestyle maintained during the marriage and both spouse's future financial needs. 

  • Legal documentation and negotiation: We prepare all the necessary legal documents and negotiate terms to reach a fair and amicable settlement. 

Seek Experienced Legal Counsel

Navigating a high-net-worth divorce in Nebraska requires a thorough understanding of the state's laws and careful consideration of the potential financial implications. At Abrahamson Law Office, our divorce lawyers are committed to helping you achieve a fair resolution that protects your assets and future financial security. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.