High Asset Divorce Your Rights Are Our Business

New Jersey High Asset Divorce Attorneys

Representing Business Owners, Executives, and Entrepreneurs

At Burnham Douglass Attorneys At Law, we know firsthand that divorce is one of the most stressful life events a married couple can endure. When divorce occurs between a couple that shares business enterprises, stocks, retirement plans, property, and real estate, the legal woes and headaches multiply. Our experienced and knowledgeable divorce lawyers have the extensive resources you need to deliver efficient representation throughout each phase of the divorce process.

Call (856) 512-1461 to speak to our legal professionals so we can discuss the ways your business, other sources of income, and investments might be impacted by your divorce.

Resourceful Strategies for Identifying Income, Assets, & Hidden Assets

Identifying the income and assets of a married couple is vital to a fair divorce settlement. The identification of hidden income and assets is equally important. In many high net worth divorces, spouses are not always aware of all income sources or assets that have accumulated during the marriage.

Business ventures, partnerships, interests, stock purchases, inheritances, trusts, and annuities that accumulate during the marital period become part of the estate. All bank accounts, brokerage accounts, individual retirement accounts, pensions, deferred compensation, and stock options available to one spouse need to be valued so that a fair distribution among both marital partners can be reached.

Division of Real Estate & Property

In a high net worth divorce, there can be several residences, vacation homes in various locations, and investment or commercial properties. Depending on the specifics of each purchase, not all property may be subject to equitable distribution. The date of the marriage, purchase date of the property, down payment amounts, and payment sources will impact the portion of the property each spouse is entitled to receive. Our legal team is here to assist with valuation, comparative market appraisal, and analysis of each property to determine fair distribution.

Couples must also decide what they will do with each property after the divorce. The issue of which property will be the place of residence for each spouse, what properties will be sold, and which properties will be redistributed among the divorcing couple must be decided. When an amicable settlement is not possible, the court will need to step in.

Retirement Benefits & Stock Options

In New Jersey, all retirement benefits accrued from the date of the marriage to the date the couple petitions for divorce are generally subject to equitable distribution. The following will be examined and then split through a domestic relations order:

  • 401k plans
  • 403B
  • IRAs
  • Pensions
  • Deferred compensation plans
  • SEPs
  • SERPs

These assets are distributed in the future, but the net worth and benefit amount you are entitled to are established at this time. Stock options offered through employment can become very complicated when figuring out taxes related to stock distribution or early withdrawal penalty.

Handling Distribution of Business Interests & Partnerships

When a spouse or couple owns a business, equitable distribution of these assets can be increasingly complex. The business or partnership must undergo a valuation process that typically requires the services of a forensic accountant and actuary.

An in-depth inspection of all aspects of the business must be conducted to determine the current and future worth of the business. This includes:

  • The business property
  • Transaction records
  • Financial records
  • Ledgers
  • Payroll
  • Receivables
  • Machinery
  • Inventory
  • Real estate
  • Client lists
  • Partnership interests
  • Enterprise
  • Goodwill

If one spouse owned the business before the marriage occurred, it may affect whether the business is considered a marital asset. The couple must also decide whether they will keep the business or sell it. Buy-outs, sale, annuitized settlement, or some other distribution agreement must be drafted when the decision is made on the future of the business.

Drafting & Enforcing Prenuptial Agreements

While prenuptial agreements are honored in New Jersey courts, it is vital that a qualified divorce lawyer reviews it in relation to current New Jersey laws. A spouse that signed a prenuptial agreement may still be entitled to part of their spouse’s retirement benefits and property.

The laws regarding prenuptial agreements are specific in New Jersey and can be overwhelming to interpret if a lawyer is not familiar with the most current stipulations. Our competent and experienced divorce lawyers will ensure that your rights are protected and that you claim your fair share of marital assets.

Experienced & Knowledgeable Counsel in Your Corner

Preparation and gaining a comprehensive understanding of your legal options are keys to successfully navigating your high asset divorce. Our legal team at Burnham Douglass Attorneys At Law is here to thoroughly review the details of your situation to get a clear picture of your finances so that we can devise a strategy that will help reduce your stress and anxiety during the divorce proceedings.

Do you need legal advice regarding your high asset divorce? Then reach out to our team of experienced legal professionals to discuss your case goals. Call (856) 512-1461 to schedule your free case consultation today.

The Stories That Matter

See What Our Valued Clients Have to Say
  • Both Michelle and Phil made me feel like I was a family member they were representing.

    “This testimonial will be the most honest you have ever read. My journey is incredible..my case was actually dismissed in summary judgment due to fact I had incompetent counsel previously. Michelle ...”

    - Robert K. Petroski
  • After meeting Michelle, she gave me the confidence I needed to fight for what I deserved.

    “When I first met Michelle, I had so many fears about filing a lawsuit. I was afraid of actually filing against Atlantic City Board of Education simply because what I had gone through was torture. I ...”

    - Maria Marino
  • I never knew compassion, value and honesty could exist in an attorney until I met Philip.

    “I'm hoping there's enough space to comment on my experience with Philip as he assisted me on a very personal matter... I was recommended by two different sources, so I hoped & prayed this would be my ...”

    - Dan
  • She was always very prompt in her follow-up and developed a winning strategy for me.

    “I am very grateful Mrs. Michelle J. Douglass took my case. You demonstrated to me great expertise. She was always very prompt in her follow-up and developed a winning strategy for me. Working with ...”

    - James Runyon
  • Michelle Douglass is a straight shooter and fights for your rights.

    “The firm handled my case in a dedicated and professional manner. Michelle Douglass is a straight shooter and fights for your rights. Her tenaciousness and no nonsense approach quickly set the tone and ...”

    - Dave Daniels
  • Phil's service exceeded my expectations and I found him to be more responsive and sensitive to my situation than the previous lawyer I had used.

    “Phil Burnham is an excellent divorce lawyer! Phil's service exceeded my expectations and I found him to be more responsive and sensitive to my situation than the previous lawyer I had used. He was ...”

    - Abby
  • Ms. Douglass always returned my calls promptly as if I were the most valuable client among the many she represents.

    “It has been a pleasure for the last couple of years working with Michelle Douglass and the entire 'My rights lawyers team'. Michelle's experience and legal knowledge on employee rights impressed me ...”

    - Heather
  • I was helped by Michelle every step of the way, with guidance and answers. She is remarkable and I love her.

    “My name is Joanne Craven. I have been a long time client of the firm and have become a personal friend with Michelle Douglass as a result. Just recently, they helped me through a very difficult time. ...”

    - Joanne Imperatore
  • Ms. Douglass, I got a feeling of genuine concern, unlike that of the prior attorneys I had spoken to.

    “I first met attorney Michelle Douglass in late fall of 2003. I had been to numerous attorneys trying to find one that was not only capable, but willing to take on such a challenge. When I presented my ...”

    - Kathy Jen
  • Michelle Douglass turned a difficult situation into an easy solution.

    “When I needed an attorney to help me through a difficult transition from employment to retirement, I turned to Michelle Douglass. Throughout my case, I was in contact with my attorneys, all of my ...”

    - Erich Straub
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What Sets Our Firm Apart?

The Difference is Clear 
  • Care

    We approach each client with compassion, empathy and care.

  • Experience

    We have an in-depth understanding of the law and how it relates to your unique case.

  • Personal Attention

    We will provide you with the personal attention your case deserves.

  • Flexible

    We offer video, after hour and weekend appointments for your convenience. 

  • High-Quality Representation

    We deliver high-quality legal work because we handle select cases.

  • Dedication

    We have been serving the needs of our clients for over 30 years and are dedicated to your success.

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