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Dividing marital property fairly in a high-asset divorce

Pennsylvania residents going through the divorce process will want to negotiate an equitable division of marital assets to protect their future financial health. Even when they work diligently to achieve this, however, they may overlook certain things that can actually result in an unfavorable division.

The first thing to remember is that not all assets have equal value. In a high-asset divorce, the parties might negotiate the different types of accounts each person will keep. These could include checking accounts and retirement accounts. For example, there may be a 401(k) account worth the same as a checking account. In the division, this might seem like an equitable division if each person gets one of the accounts. However, there are tax implications that would show differently. While the money in a checking account can be used without being taxed, the money in a 401(k) will be taxed as income if it is withdrawn early.

In a high-asset divorce, the parties also often negotiate over property, including the home. While keeping the home might have emotional impact, the costs involved in the upkeep could actually pose a financial problem. Getting the home in exchange for more liquid assets, such as investment accounts, might also prove to be unfair when those upkeep costs are factored in.

Another way residents might try to protect their rights during the asset division process is by consulting with a lawyer who has family law experience. A lawyer could provide information about the best options available and represent the client in negotiations.

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