When you file for divorce in Virginia, financial issues may be a central focus of proceedings, as well as child custody, if you have children. In fact, finance often intersects with custody because, of course, children have financial needs and parents must provide for them. When a couple’s net worth is high, property and debt division can be complex.
Keeping several issues in mind may help you protect your interests and ensure that you do not walk away with anything less than what you have a right to receive. Compromise is one thing, but accepting a settlement that is unfair is quite another. No one should have to do that.
Liability is another word for debt in a divorce
Virginia divorce laws demand that you and your spouse fully disclose all your assets and liabilities. If you own joint accounts, such as a credit card account that still has a balance, then you are both responsible for the debt. The same is true of outstanding mortgage or car loans, etc., which is why it’s important to compile a list of all your liabilities.
In the same way, you will also want to take a thorough inventory of everything you own and create a list of assets. Marital property consists of assets you or your spouse acquired during marriage. The court will divide all marital property and marital liabilities between you and your ex.
Make sure no one is doing anything to undermine the system
To receive a fair settlement, both sides must play fair. This is especially true during division of property and debt in a high-net-worth divorce. If you think your spouse is trying to hide assets to keep them from being subject to division, you can bring the matter to the court’s immediate attention. Also, if you suspect that your ex is trying to manipulate numbers or falsify records, etc., to get out of paying a debt, this, too, is an issue a family court judge would want to know.
Virginia is an equitable property state
Filing for divorce in a high-net-worth case can be challenging. Just remember that Virginia operates under equitable property guidelines, which means the judge will not necessarily split everything 50/50 but will determine a fair division of all marital assets and debts. Whether you were married for just several years or several decades, you deserve a fair settlement.