When spouses make the decision to divorce, the question, “What happens to the real estate portfolio and investment assets?” may arise. The division of real estate and other investment assets is one of the most challenging aspects of a divorce, even in an equitable division state such as Iowa. When an individual wants to protect their real estate portfolio during a divorce, they may consider seeking legal counsel from a divorce attorney to ensure their financial rights remain protected. The skilled and knowledgeable divorce attorneys at Simpson Legal Group, LLC, has helped clients with significant real estate portfolios navigate the divorce process and protect their assets and long-term investments. Obtain a personalized consultation about your specific questions regarding your real estate portfolios and your divorce by calling our experienced family law attorneys today at (712) 256-9899.
The Importance of Planning Before Divorce
Often, the best way to protect a real estate portfolio in a divorce is to start planning before the marriage occurs. Many individuals who accumulate significant assets before a marriage choose to sign a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement with their spouse to protect their separate property during any future divorce proceedings. Prenuptial agreements, also known as “prenups,” are becoming popular among individuals of all ages. Prenuptial agreements can help an individual protect their investments, business, real estate, and even retirement plans.
However, not every couple has a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. The strategy to protect a real estate portfolio during a divorce changes drastically when the couple does not have either a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. In these cases, an individual who wishes to protect their assets want to visit with an experienced attorney to determine their options regarding the intersection of their real estate portfolios and divorce.
What Happens to the Marital Home in a Divorce?
One of the most common – and toughest – questions that arise during a divorce is, “What happens to the marital home?” For most couples, their marital home is their most valuable asset, which is why it is critical to understand how state law divides the marital home. Iowa is an equitable distribution state, according to the Iowa State Bar Association. It means that any assets acquired by the couple before or after the marriage are subject to division unless the property was received through gift or inheritance.
In most divorce cases in Iowa, the marital home is subject to division when a couple decides to end a marriage. Iowa courts consider a variety of factors, including the distribution of other assets, the income and earning capacity of each spouse, and many other financial factors when determining what happens to the marital home. For many couples, the family home is the most valuable asset in their real estate portfolio, which is why they are willing to fight for it in court to win the battle. If there are disagreements regarding who should keep the marital home, spouses may want to consider hiring an experienced divorce attorney at Simpson Legal Group, LLC, to help them reach an agreement amicably.
Real Estate Portfolios and Divorce When There Is No Prenuptial Agreement
Less than 10% of American couples sign prenuptial agreements before marriage. When spouses do not have a prenuptial agreement to secure their real estate portfolio during a divorce, they may use one of the following strategies to fairly divide a real estate portfolio:
1. Buying Out the Spouse
One of the most common tactics to deal with real estate portfolios and divorce is buying out the former spouse, especially if the spouse is not interested in the actual real estate. However, before making the decision to buy out the former spouse, an individual should consider hiring a professional appraiser to conduct an evaluation of the total value of the real estate portfolio. Then, the individual needs to determine the appropriate amount of money they are willing to offer to buy their former spouse’s share of ownership. It is essential to draft a legally binding agreement when buying out the former spouse.
2. Selling the Property
There may be some instances in which some (or all) of a real estate portfolio could be sold to more easily equitably divide the proceeds of these assets to both spouses. It is important to note that a spouse should not sell any property immediately prior to a divorce, or during the divorce process. A full inventory of all assets must be done, and a listing of all marital property must be determined. Selling property prior to this full disclosure could be seen as an attempt to hide marital assets.
Dividing assets and determining the division of a real estate portfolio between spouses is one of the most complicated aspects of a divorce, especially if the divorce involves significant assets and finances.
How an Experienced Divorce Attorney at Simpson Legal Group, LLC Can Help Answer Your Questions About Your Real Estate Portfolio
In most cases, making decisions together with a spouse is the most efficient solution to make determinations regarding a real estate portfolio in a divorce. However, not all spouses are able to have productive communications regarding real estate portfolios and divorce. As a result, many spouses who wish to ensure their real estate portfolio is divided equitably may want to consider contacting an experienced divorce attorney to provide all of their legal options, and ensure their rights remain protected. The divorce attorneys at Simpson Legal Group, LLC, have helped numerous clients across Iowa develop uniquely crafted plans to protect their real estate portfolios, and ensure they receive the proper division of assets in a divorce. Contact our legal team today at (712) 256-9899 to schedule an appointment.