The goal in divorce is for the Tennessee family courts to create fair solutions that look at the rights of each spouse and the needs of their children. Fairness when dividing a couple’s property and debts requires a broad perspective that looks at the totality of the circumstances.
Everything from the length of the marriage, to the house, to earning potential will affect the property division outcome. Pushing for a fair outcome requires that you adequately represent your circumstances and that you provide the courts with accurate information about your assets and debts. Even if you hope to settle things in mediation or outside of court, you still need an accurate inventory of your personal property to determine what is appropriate and fair.
Some people become so fixated on specific assets, like the family home, during a divorce, that they fail to include requests for other valuable property. Knowing which assets people frequently overlook can help you avoid making that mistake yourself.
Look for digital resources
Bitcoin and other forms of cryptocurrency have become popular investments. The somewhat anonymous nature of cryptocurrency makes it difficult for people to track ownership or determine how much someone has if that person wants to hide it. Reviewing financial statements or investment records could help determine if your spouse has invested in cryptocurrency with marital assets.
Review workplace compensation like deferred stock and pensions
Just because an asset is ineligible for sale right now does not mean it isn’t marital property. You may have a claim to a share of the employment benefits earned during your marriage, such as contributions to a pension, deferred stock or stock options. The courts may divide the assets or use their value to give you a fair share of other resources.
Look at personal property that you do not wish to keep
You may have no interest in your spouse’s antique desk or their collection of jewelry, but the income used to purchase them was marital, which means that their value is as well.
Collectibles, vehicles, designer clothing and furniture are all physical possessions that people overlook because they don’t want to keep the property. You don’t need to want the asset itself to understand its value and deserve your share.
Look at financial records closely
Overlooked assets aren’t the only risk. Unaccounted for income and financial assets could be a sign that your spouse has secret investments or bank accounts.
Only when you know the full value and contents of your marital estate can you seek a fair share in your high-asset divorce.