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A high asset divorce can present special challenges

A high-net worth divorce can present special challenges for Missouri residents. When a couple with significant assets splits up, a spouse who has significantly less income than the other spouse may fear a loss of financial security.

Under Missouri law, the court in a divorce case makes an equitable division of the couple's marital property. The court must first identify what assets constitute marital property. Generally speaking, marital property is any property acquired by either spouse, or both spouses, during the marriage, except property received by one spouse alone as a gift or by way of an inheritance. Property a spouse owned before the couple married is considered that spouse's separate property; it is not divided.

Equitable division does not necessarily mean a 50/50 split. It means the court will make a division that is fair under all the circumstances. The court can consider the economic impact of the divorce on one spouse in arriving at a just and equitable asset division.

For high-income couples, divorce can involve complex issues of asset valuation and appraisal, as well as classification and division of business assets, real estate and retirement plans. Dividing a retirement account requires an understanding of the tax issues involved; the division must be done in such a way as to preserve the tax advantages of the account.

At our law firm, we do our best to help clients navigate the painful process of ending a marriage. We fight for what our clients deserve when it comes to property division, and we strive to do so in a manner that is as cost-efficient as possible.

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Joseph J. Porzenski
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