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Massachusetts high asset divorce involves equitable distribution

Divorce may be on the horizon if the couple simply cannot reconcile their differences. The process of getting divorced can be difficult emotionally, no matter what the income levels of the parties may be. However, a high asset divorce can be especially tough to navigate.

Massachusetts is one of 41 states that observe equitable distribution law. In Massachusetts, assets will be split in a manner that a judge determines to be fair instead of simply splitting all of the marital estate's assets down the middle. A wealthier spouse, particularly in a short marriage, may therefore fare better financially after asset division. However, in a longer marriage -- say one of 10 years -- the court will be more likely to divide the marital property equally.

In a state that observes community property law, marital assets will automatically be split 50/50. In these states, all items acquired during the marriage (with a few exceptions such as inheritances and individual gifts) are designated community property. Separate property that an individual owned prior to the marriage and that has been kept separate during the marriage is also excluded from a community property designation.

During the process of asset division in Massachusetts, the judge will take into account both parties' earning potential or their incomes as well as their contributions and financial needs. Another factor that the judge will consider is the personal assets of each party. It is possible that the judge may end up ordering an equal division of the couple's assets anyway after taking these factors into consideration, but this is not a given. It is within the rights of a person going through a high asset divorce to seek an outcome that is ultimately in his or her best interests financially.

Source: businessinsider.com, "The best states to get divorced in if you are much richer than your spouse", Tanza Loudenback, Nov. 16, 2016

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