Many divorces are finalized in about six months or so. It’s rare for a divorce to last longer than a year. So you can imagine the frustration of one Illinois couple who took a whopping eight years to finally reach a settlement.
Why did it take so long? There were significant assets involved. The 77-year-old man was the founder of Cancer Treatment Centers of America and had amassed a large fortune. The 52-year-old woman was on salary with the company and was paid $100,000 a year. During her 26-year marriage, she enjoyed many perks, such as $4 million in jewelry, private jets, cars, luxury shopping, vacations and everything her heart desired. Money was never an issue.
Now that the couple has divorced, the woman hoped to continue her lifestyle, including enough money to purchase motorcycles, homes, condos, furniture and even her own personal assistant. However, when she married, she signed a prenuptial agreement, which limited her assets. However, it did not specifically address alimony payments.
The woman was asking for $5 million a year in alimony, or more than $400,000 a month. Instead, she will receive $27,500 a month, as well as a lump sum of $6.5 million. She will also receive a one-time payment of $450,000 to go toward housing, a Porsche, jewelry, 401(k) and two motorcycles. This was less than she expected, but the judge considered the fact that the couple had been separated for 10 years.
High asset divorces often involve much more than money. There are often businesses at stake, as well as stocks, 401(k)s, retirement plans, pensions, cars, houses, jewelry, antiques and furniture. Sometimes a spouse will hide assets so they cannot be split in the divorce.
There is a lot at stake in a high asset divorce. Many couples overlook taxes, but when you’re dealing with the distribution of assets, it can affect your tax liability.
Some people want the divorce to be done as soon as possible. As such, they will give the other party what they want in order to reach an agreement quickly. Or the person who is divorcing may feel guilty and want to give the other party a larger share of the assets. You need to really think about the consequences of doing either of these. Don’t let emotions control your actions.
A high asset divorce can be complicated. With so much money and other assets involved, it’s not uncommon for both parties to fight over their fair share and take many years to reach a settlement. If you’re going through a high asset divorce, Arami Law can help you value your assets and advise you of your next steps. Contact Arami Law at (312) 212-1399 for more information.
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