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Importance of valuation experts in a high asset divorce

Many California residents are well aware that asset division is one of the most contentious issues in any divorce, especially when the parties involved are millionaires. High financial risks are often involved in a high value divorce and any minute mistake can cost a party millions of dollars. Such financial risks can be mitigated by appointing a valuation expert to objectively conduct asset valuation using conventional methods and techniques.

Usually, certified valuation experts are associated with accounting firms. They may be employed to assess the value of an interest in a partnership or shares in a family business or a privately held company.

The difficulties of dividing investments between a divorcing couple are compounded with ancillary issues such as the distribution and transfer of ownership and sale. A financial expert who has investment management experience can help lawyers and their clients resolve such issues and facilitate the division of such assets.

In addition to dividing investments in companies, dividing life insurance money between a couple can also be difficult because insurance policies are structured in various ways depending on the needs of the insured. Moreover, insurance policies are often held by trusts for estate planning purposes. Furthermore, many people fail to recognize that they may have accumulated substantial value in a life insurance policy. If a spouse is unaware of this value during the divorce, that spouse may fail to include in the asset division process. Therefore, a financial expert on trust and insurance should be employed to ensure equitable distribution of insurance money.

Another problematic area that requires valuation and accounting is lifestyle. Often, one of the spouses of a high-profile couple earns significantly more than the other. In such cases, a lifestyle analysis by a financial expert can play a crucial role in determining the settlement amount.

A financial expert can make a substantial difference when it comes to property division between couples undergoing divorce. Anyone with questions about property division and divorce legal issues should first contact an experienced family law attorney.

Source: Forbes.com, "Getting the Most From A High-Dollar Divorce," Russ Alan Prince, Accessed on June 12, 2015

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John T. Chamberlin, Attorney at Law
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