Dividing assets in a divorce can be exceptionally complicated – and possibly contentious. However, when divorcing spouses understand how this process works and what they must do, they can minimize the potential for conflicts.
For instance, when you divorce, you will make a list of all your community and separate property before deciding how to distribute eligible assets. To ensure this process goes smoothly, parties should have a full accounting of their community and separate assets, including some that people often overlook.
- Digital property: Digital assets are electronic or virtual items that hold value. Examples of this type of property include everything from photos and videos to cryptocurrency and monetized social media accounts.
- Personal property: Everything inside your home, garage or storage unit can be eligible for division in a divorce. Common examples include furniture, tools and electronics.
- Pension plans and retirement accounts: These property types can be surprisingly valuable and may dramatically affect the division of assets.
- Collections: You might have art, action figure, jewelry or stamp collections to distribute in a divorce. These collections can be highly complicated to value, especially if parties wish to split them up.
- Intellectual property: These items include materials protected by a patent, copyright or trademark.
- Memberships and rewards programs: Spouses may be members of a country club or a gym. There may also be frequent flyer miles or other rewards accumulated. In a divorce, parties will need to decide how to handle these assets.
- Season tickets: If you have season tickets for the Golden State Warriors or passes to Disneyland, these tickets (or their equivalent value) can also be eligible for division in a divorce.
This list represents just some of the items that parties either undervalue or overlook in a divorce. Such oversights can result in an unfair, unbalanced division of property.
Therefore, when working with your attorney to create a list of assets and liabilities, do not forget these items. Even if they are separate property and are not eligible for division, the value they hold can still affect the overall settlement. They can also influence matters such as child support and alimony.