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Property division after lengthy a lengthy marriage

Older couples are choosing to divorce more often in recent years as some Massachusetts residents may have noticed. Some of these couples who have been together for decades have a significant number of assets, and property division can be difficult. One couple who had been together for nearly seven decades now faces the task of dividing a multi-million dollar real estate empire. 

The ex-wife's attorney has been pushing the judge to end the marriage sooner rather than later. Because of their ages, she 89 and he 90, time is a concern for both of the former spouses. Since the divorce was granted before her death, the ex-wife is entitled to half of the real estate empire, but if she had died before the divorce was final, then she would have only been entitled to about 30 percent. It also would have taken a significant amount of time to catalog and divide the far-flung assets, which include shops, restaurants and office buildings, before the divorce was finalized.

This divorce has had a significant effect on not just the former spouses, but on the former couple's three adult children. The children, who have owned and managed a number of properties included in their parents' real estate empire, are also fighting to ensure that they are no longer required to work with their father after the divorce is final. Unfortunately, these proceedings have brought out a more hostile side of the children's father. In addition to being accused of siphoning assets into another account, the man has claimed that he sees his children more as his enemies than his family. 

Divorces involving a large number of assets, financial or otherwise, can be very difficult for the entire family. Some family members might not want to part with certain assets, or they might try to dispose of assets or hide them from their spouse or children. Massachusetts couples who have chosen to file for divorce could benefit from speaking with their attorneys about property division and what assets they might be expected to give up or divide. 

Source: palmbeachpost.com, "Judge splits Palm Beach couple; now trial on real estate empire", Jane Musgrave, Feb. 5, 2018

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