Protecting Your Assets During a Divorce
You’re getting ready to divorce, and one of your biggest concerns is your assets. As you prepare for life after divorce, you already know that having a substantial share of the marital assets is key to establishing your financial security and quality of life. If you’re concerned about losing your assets to your spouse, know that there are many ways you can safeguard your assets and get what you deserve.
Having the right legal team by your side can help you navigate this time with minimal stress and anxiety. Call the Louisville divorce attorneys of John H. Ruby & Associates at 502-373-8044 to set up a consultation with our team right away.
Know Kentucky’s Laws Regarding the Distribution of Assets
Kentucky, like most other states, is an equitable distribution state. While community property states divide marital property equally, equitable distribution states split up assets in a way that is fair to both parties. How assets are distributed is dependent on both parties’ personal assets, income, health and age, conduct, and contributions to the marital assets. Keeping this in mind during negotiations can help you know when to hold your ground and when to compromise—it’s almost always better to negotiate the distribution of assets with your ex rather than put it in the court’s hands.
Do Not Take Matters into Your Own Hands
First, do not make the mistake that so many people have, and try to hide assets to keep them from getting into your spouse’s hands. Whatever you’re thinking of doing—“giving” items to family members with the intent of getting them back later, spending money so that your spouse can’t get their share, or transferring assets to other accounts or locations—just don’t do it.
No matter what plan you have, it’s not one that your spouse’s attorney and the judge haven’t seen a thousand times already. They will see what’s happening, they will call it out, and you will be penalized for it. Not only will you not get to keep that asset, but you may actually have to give your spouse more because of your poor conduct and mishandling of marital assets.
Locating and Valuing Assets
Creating a comprehensive inventory of separate and marital assets is a critical first step. Kentucky requires full financial disclosure during divorce, which means you need to know which assets you have and how much they are worth. If you and your spouse have accumulated a sizable estate, this may take quite a while as you seek out specialized appraisers and experts. All this work puts you on solid ground for negotiations.
Legal Strategies to Protect Your Assets
If you are not quite at the divorce stage yet, you may want to consider a postnuptial agreement if you do not have a prenuptial agreement in place. You might wonder why a married person would sign an agreement that gives up their right to certain marital property in a divorce—there are several reasons. Someone may be open to signing a postnup if they have cheated, violated their spouse’s financial security, or otherwise betrayed their spouse in a way that threatens the foundation of the marriage. A postnup may be enough to give the betrayed spouse the security they need to give it another try.
Document everything from the moment you decide to divorce. If your spouse starts using marital assets to pay for their affair partner’s needs, hiding assets, or being unusually generous with their assets, there’s a good chance that they will be forced to repay what they essentially stole from you.
You should also spend some time thinking about which assets matter most to you and your spouse. If you know that certain assets are their top priority and they are assets you don’t care about, you can leverage that during negotiations to get a larger share of other assets. By working with your attorney, you can decide where you have some wiggle room and where your bottom line is.
Facing Divorce? Call John H. Ruby & Associates to Discuss Your Options
The earlier you begin working with a divorce attorney, the sooner you can start protecting your best interests during your divorce. Get the process started now by calling John H. Ruby & Associates at 502-373-8044 or filling out our online contact form.