What Makes a Divorce Complex?

IL divorce lawyerThe divorce of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West made headlines around the world recently. There have been varying opinions about the divorce since it was announced, but one thing is certain. The divorce case is likely to be quite complex, even though the couple had a premarital agreement in place. Kim and Kanye, however, are not the first couple to go through a complex divorce, and they will not be the last, either. Below are some of the factors that can make a divorce case complex.

Distinguishing Separate Property from Marital Property

In a divorce, only marital property is divided. Marital property includes any assets or liabilities the couple acquired together during the marriage. Determining which assets are considered separate property is typically more difficult than identifying marital property. Inheritances and gifts, as well as personal injury awards, are types of property that are usually considered separate.

However, it is important that spouses keep these assets separate from marital assets, such as placing them in a separate account. Co-mingling assets makes it incredibly difficult to determine which of the assets have been spent, and how much of the separate property remains. When separate property is not kept separate, it may be subject to property division.

High Net Worth

When one or both spouses have a high net worth, many complicated factors come into play. A family business may have to be divided, as well as different real estate properties, stocks, retirement savings accounts, and more. All of these assets must first be valued so they can be divided appropriately.

Another complex issue that sometimes arises when a couple has a high net worth is when one spouse has enhanced earnings from a certain license or degree. This is particularly true when the other spouse supported the education or career that allowed their partner to earn a higher income. For example, if one spouse worked so that the other spouse could go to school and earn an advanced degree, the working spouse may be entitled to a portion of those higher earnings.

Enforcing Premarital or Postnuptial Agreements

It is not uncommon for couples to draft a premarital agreement or a postnuptial agreement to protect themselves in the event of divorce. However, even when an agreement is in place, it could still raise certain issues. One spouse may challenge the agreement, making it more difficult to enforce.

When that is the case, a family law judge will have to look at the facts of the case and determine whether the agreement is enforceable. Some factors that may result in an agreement not being enforced include when it was signed under duress, when it includes provisions for child custody or support, and when one party did not fully disclose their assets.

Our Illinois Family Lawyers Can Advise on Your Complex Divorce

There are a number of factors that may complicate a divorce, and the above are just a few of them. If you are getting a divorce, it is important to speak to a skilled DuPage County family lawyer, particularly if the case is complex. At the Law Office of Martoccio & Martoccio, our skilled attorneys know how to resolve complex issues so you secure the fair settlement you deserve. Call us today at 630-920-8855 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.




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