Skilled High-Asset Divorce Attorneys in San Jose, CA
Any divorce case can be complicated and difficult to navigate. A high-asset divorce, however, is especially complex. If a married couple has high-value assets, this can make matters such as property and debt division more difficult to settle. Large sums of money, valuable items, investments, businesses and real estate can be difficult to divide between spouses in a high-asset divorce.
If you have a high-asset divorce case in San Jose, contact the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. for assistance with the legal process. We can properly handle your complicated high-asset divorce case according to what is in your best interest.
WE UNDERSTAND HIGH-ASSET DIVORCES
Our divorce lawyers in San Jose have more than 35 years of experience representing clients in all types of divorce cases, including high-asset divorces. At the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C., we take the time to get to know our clients so we can customize our legal strategies. Clients throughout California choose us for several reasons, including:
- Our law firm has the resources, lawyers and knowledge to ensure fair and just property division for all parties involved.
- We have a network of professionals we can turn to for help to properly locate, identify, and value your assets. Our attorneys work with accountants, tax experts, appraisers and other financial professionals to accurately evaluate high-value assets.
- Our divorce lawyers provide compassionate and respectful legal representation. We care about how your divorce affects you and your family.
- We develop personalized legal strategies to help protect your assets and achieve your goals.
With so much on the line in a high-asset divorce case, do not risk going unrepresented. You need a lawyer to help you understand and protect your rights during a complicated divorce case. Our divorce attorneys can help you with necessary tasks such as accurately recording all of your assets and evaluating the monetary worth of each. We will stand by your side through every phase of the divorce process in San Jose.
HOW HIGH-ASSET DIVORCES DIFFER FROM REGULAR DIVORCES
A high-asset divorce is unique compared to a regular divorce case because more valuable belongings mean a more complicated divorce process. Significant assets accumulated over the course of a marriage can make it less likely for the couple to achieve a settlement, increasing the odds of going to court. Furthermore, high-asset divorces often involve types of assets that are difficult to divide, such as retirement accounts and investments that have appreciated over time. High-asset divorces may involve:
- Vacation properties
- Real property
- Vehicles, boats and aircraft
- Artwork and collectibles
- Family heirlooms
- Pension plans
- Stocks and bonds
- Stock options
- Life insurance policies
- Future interests
High-asset divorce cases may also involve offshore accounts, hidden assets and international laws, so it is important to have lawyers familiar with these aspects and how to operate within the law.
Additionally, high-asset divorces may require hiring additional professionals who can properly identify, locate, and value assets. A high-asset divorce case may require input from certified public accountants, finance experts, economists and a team of attorneys to ensure the fair division of community property. Accurate appraisals are also vital to properly dividing high-value assets. All of these factors make it more important to hire an attorney for your high-asset divorce case in San Jose.
HOW DOES COMMUNITY PROPERTY WORK IN A HIGH-ASSET DIVORCE?
California is one of only a few community property states in the country. Under California’s community property law, all assets and debts acquired during a marriage fall under the category of community property. This means both spouses own the property. In a divorce, the courts split all community property in half, giving 50% to one spouse and 50% to the other. In an equitable division state, on the other hand, the courts divide marital property in a manner that is fair given the circumstances, even if it is not a 50/50 split.
In a high-asset divorce case, California’s community property law will split all marital property down the middle. The courts will not look at each spouse’s income level, fault for the divorce, nor child custody to determine property division, unlike most other states. Instead, property division will be a 50/50 split regardless of each spouse’s economic circumstances. This makes it extremely important to differentiate community from separate property.
WHAT IS SEPARATE PROPERTY IN CALIFORNIA
While most property in a marriage is community property, spouses may also own separate property. Common examples of separate property include:
- Property acquired before the marriage – Generally, any property you owned before the marriage is separate property. This rule also applies to debt.
- Property acquired as a gift or inheritance – Property that was acquired as an individual gift or inheritance, rather than as a gift or inheritance to the couple, is separate property.
- Property subject to a valid marital agreement – People are free to enter into agreements with others, including prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. These agreements can supersede the state’s default rules regarding community property.
- Property obtained after separation – Property you or your spouse obtain after separation is also considered separate property.
- Property acquired with separate property – Property you obtain with separate property, such as rents you receive from real property you owned before marriage, is also considered separate property.
There are strict rules for what is and is not separate or community property. Other factors can affect ownership rights, such as if the property was obtained in another state or another person co-owns the property. Even if a spouse treated property as separate during the marriage, the law may not recognize it as such.
A family law attorney from the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. can help you understand what is community property vs. separate property in your divorce case. The courts will not touch your separate property, while it will split community property in half. Correctly identifying each type of property is important in a high-asset divorce case, as it can determine whether or not you have to share each asset with your spouse after a divorce. We can help you properly evaluate and categorize all of your assets.
DIVORCE SETTLEMENT VS. A TRIAL IN SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA
Another way in which a high-asset divorce case is different from a regular divorce is that the latter is more likely to end in a settlement. A case with high-value assets is more likely to go to trial due to the inability of the couple to work together on asset and property division. If the couple cannot achieve an uncontested divorce settlement, the case will go to trial in San Jose. It will then be a judge’s responsibility to divide property rather than the couple having a say in the matter.
One of the best ways to protect your property rights is through the use of a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. These legally binding agreements can organize the division of your property, including ownership of high-value assets, prior to a divorce. Having a prenup or postnup could protect the assets you came into the marriage with, as well as your future earnings. As long as the agreement is legally enforceable, it will protect your property rights in the event of a divorce.
If your divorce case does go to trial in California, hire a lawyer to represent you. A divorce attorney in San Jose can represent you before a judge and jury to make the legal process easier during a difficult time. Your lawyer will provide evidence and witness testimony to help you establish a strong argument for property division, as well as help you with matters such as child support, child custody and spousal support.
HOW OUR SAN JOSE HIGH-ASSET DIVORCE LAWYERS CAN HELP
Our team of highly-qualified San Jose high-asset divorce lawyers can help your case by:
- Classifying property correctly – Our team can analyze your assets and help determine if it is separate or community property. Depending on the circumstances, this may require carefully tracing the source of funds that paid for the asset in question.
- Locating assets – Unfortunately, when there are more valuable assets involved, there is a greater incentive for people to try to hide assets. There are also more complex ways to do so, such as using anonymous cryptocurrency, offshore bank accounts, or business holdings to hide the identity of the asset and owner.
- Valuing property accurately – Special care must be taken to accurately value property in these types of divorces. We turn to our network of professionals to accurately determine the value of property.
- Resolving support issues – Spousal support can be particularly valuable in high-asset divorce cases. We can examine the relevant factors and make compelling arguments in your position.
- Reviewing marital agreements – Many high-asset divorce cases involve pre- or post-nuptial agreements. We can carefully review these agreements for their terms and any mistakes that could jeopardize them.
- Discussing your legal options – We can keep you apprised of the status of your case and discuss the many options that may be available to you. For example, we can take your case to court or try to negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf. We will always work in your best interest and at your direction.
CONTACT OUR SAN JOSE HIGH-ASSET DIVORCE LAWYERS TODAY
If you have a high-asset divorce in San Jose, contact the lawyers at the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. for assistance. Our attorneys have years of experience successfully handling high-asset divorce cases throughout California. We can help you with your specific case using tailored legal strategies. Call (415) 213-2651 or contact us online now for a divorce consultation in San Jose.