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Property Valuation Issues in a Divorce

The division of marital property is often an area of contention in a divorce. When examining the issues regarding the distribution of assets and debts, two initial issues must be resolved: Determining whether a property should be classified as marital property or separate property, and determining the value of the property.

This is part two of a two-blog series on the complexities of the division of marital property in a divorce. This blog will focus on property valuation issues. A previous blog focused on property classification issues.

Texas is a community property state, meaning a judge will divide your marital assets and debts as he, or she, deems proper and just under your particular set of circumstances. Once a particular asset has been identified as marital property, the next issue that must be determined is the value of that asset.

In some instances, the value of an asset is readily obtained. For example, stock in a publicly-traded company can be easily valued. Hard assets that are often bought or sold are typically easy to value.

However, due to their nature or uniqueness, some assets are much more difficult to value, including the following:

  • Professional businesses, including,
    • Law practice
    • Medical practice
    • Dental practice
    • Accounting practice
    • Other professional practices
  • Ownership in closed corporations or small businesses
  • Art
  • Real estate
  • Stock options
  • Insurance policies
  • Retirement plans
  • Profit-sharing plans
  • Annuities
  • Collectibles

In the above examples, there are many issues involving the valuation of marital property, including the uniqueness of the property, issues of property values in constant flux, and issues of determining which point in time should be used to value the property. An experienced family law attorney can assist you with the valuation issues of property in a divorce.

Individuals throughout the DFW Metroplex contemplating divorce or who have been served with divorce papers, and have a division of property issues, including valuation issues of marital assets, can turn to Pfister Family Law for experienced help.