Protecting Your Assets During Divorce Proceedings
When one household becomes two, everything must be divided. When large amounts of property, sophisticated investments or closely held businesses are involved, this process can become complex.
At the Law Offices of Maribeth Blessing, LLC, located in Rockledge, Pennsylvania, we have more than 30 years of experience helping our clients protect their assets during divorce. We work with a team of financial experts to evaluate everything from current value to future cash flow, then work toward property settlements that allow our clients to protect their hard-earned assets.
The First Step: Determining Whether An Asset Is Separate Or Marital Property
Only marital property or debt is divided during divorce. If a property was owned by one spouse prior to the marriage, or gained via inheritance or by gift during the marriage, it may be a separate asset. The key here is to determine whether the cash or property was “commingled” at any point, thus becoming a marital asset. Determining this requires strategic investigation and asset tracing — a process with which our firm is extremely knowledgeable. Once we determine whether assets are marital or separate, we can proceed with the division plan.
It is important to hire a lawyer who understands how procedural rules vary from county-to-county. For example, in certain counties in Pennsylvania there is a 20-year look back known as a “vanishing credit.” If a marital asset was purchased with one party’s premarital cash, a portion of the asset may remain separate.
Step Two: Creating A Plan That Protects Your Assets
We make sure we understand your priorities. Which properties/assets do you absolutely want to keep? Which properties/assets are you willing to let go? Knowing this gives us a lot of flexibility when negotiating with the other side. This approach lets us focus on the items that are most important to you, while using other assets as bargaining chips.
We Are Always Focused On Time And Cost
When money is at issue, it is easy for disputes to become heated. While we never want our clients to leave their marriage on uncertain financial footing, we do think there is a better – more cost-effective – way to resolve financial disputes. Attorney Maribeth Blessing is trained in mediation and collaborative law. She is known as a peaceful, yet effective legal advocate who uses alternative methods to resolve her clients’ disputes in a timely and cost-efficient manner. Whenever possible, we encourage our clients to use alternative means – like mediation or collaborative law – to resolve their property division disputes.