Avoiding a messy high-asset divorce

Many Texas residents have likely heard about the impending divorce involving Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife of 25 years. The couple appears to be handling things right so far. They started off with a joint announcement that included a commitment to enjoy a "shared new life". While this is admirable, there are other steps high-asset couples may want to consider to avoid common missteps.

For starters, being highly focused during the divorce process can make it easier to restructure the family. This typically means encouraging spouses to avoid negative talk in public while continuing to attend school-related, social, and public functions together without conflict. Splitting spouses are also urged to avoid making decisions based on emotions.

A divorce is essentially a legal termination of a marriage contract. This means there will be a need to split up property and assets. With a high-asset split like what's going on with the Bezoses, the biggest asset on the table is the business. Since Amazon was founded post-marriage, it will likely be considered marital property. Some CEOs prefer to retain as much company stock as possible while transferring other assets to their ex, although this may not be possible with a company as valuable as Amazon. Because there's often a desire to settle out of court, separating spouses with sizable assets are also advised to know when to accept a reasonable settlement.

The process of complex asset division may be less hectic if each party has the right team in place. In addition to a family law attorney, other professionals often include a financial planner or adviser, a business valuation expert, a therapist to deal with the emotional impact of divorce, and a CPA.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information