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3 overlooked valuables in high-value divorces

In a high-net-worth divorce, the stakes can be substantial. Absent a valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, these kinds of divorces can often turn contentious and bitter when it comes time to divide the marital assets.

While most couples tend to focus on the highly visible assets, like real estate, investments and business holdings, there are a lot of valuable assets that can easily get overlooked. Consider these:

Intellectual property rights

Patents, copyrights, trademarks and royalties derived from one spouse’s creative works or inventions can possess immense monetary potential. However, these assets can easily slip through the cracks during divorce proceedings, especially if it’s believed that the creative spouse owns all that they produce as separate property instead of recognizing that their creations are part of the marital estate.

Deferred compensation and stock options

Executives and high-earning professionals often receive compensation packages that include stock options, restricted stock units (RSUs) and deferred bonuses. These assets can hold substantial future value – even if they’re largely worthless at the time of the divorce. Failing to consider the implications of deferred compensation and unvested stock options can result in inequitable settlements, depriving one spouse of their rightful share of the future earnings those stock options may bring.

Airline miles and credit card points

Airline miles and credit card points may not be immediately apparent as marital assets, yet they can represent a substantial portion of the couple’s combined wealth, especially in cases where one spouse frequently travels for work or accumulates significant credit card rewards. In many cases, their value can total into the thousands.

If you’re approaching a divorce that involves a lot of assets, it pays to scrutinize your financial holdings very carefully – and experienced guidance can make it a lot easier not to leave money on the table.




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