Your extraordinary wealth brings a set of complex financial dynamics to your family that requires specifically trained legal guidance, whether you are creating an estate plan or seeking a divorce. Business interests, real estate holdings, spousal support, custody, and privacy concerns must be addressed in a way that meets your family’s priorities.
Our team of experienced high-asset divorce and estate planning attorneys can help build a customized plan for your family to thrive long-term. If there are aspects beyond family law or estate planning that require the attention of a specialized expert, you can be confident our network of professional partners represents the best and brightest talent Washington has to offer.
Some marital assets are relatively easy to identify, such as shared homes, bank accounts, and vehicles. However, high-net-worth spouses may hold more unique assets, including but not limited to:
These assets can be like an onion needing the many layers peeled back to reveal their full value. It is critical to account for and evaluate all high-value marital assets before entering divorce negotiations. We can assist you with this.
Marital (or community) property includes any asset acquired by either party during marriage. With few exceptions, marital property subject to equal division typically includes:
• Both parties’ earnings during marriage
• Interest income on assets like investments, capital gains, and retirement benefits
• All property obtained with earnings during the marriage
• All property acquired with community funds
• Debts incurred during the marriage by either spouse
Any inheritance received, assets acquired before marriage by either spouse, and gifts to a specific spouse are considered separate property by local courts and are not generally subject to division upon divorce.
An asset characterized as separate property may be subject to division if combined with community property or if the court deems it necessary to create an equitable division of assets. For example, if a couple uses income earned during the marriage to maintain a home inherited by one spouse, the home may be categorized as community property. Our attorneys are experienced in high-asset divorce cases and can help you avoid losing property in a divorce.
While there may be cases where it is okay to proceed without legal counsel, it is not advisable in many circumstances, especially with a high-net-worth divorce. Retaining skilled legal counsel to help protect your interests and preserve your wishes for your family’s future is strongly recommended.
Spouses with substantial assets may have significantly more at stake in a marriage dissolution. One of our knowledgeable attorneys can work with experts on your behalf to accurately identify and evaluate your assets to ensure an appropriate community property division. Get in touch with one of our Washington office’s high-asset divorce lawyers today to speak with us about your options.
If you and your partner reside in Washington state and are unmarried, you each might qualify for the legal protections availed to you by law by classifying your relationship as a committed intimate relationship.
If you have a significant amount of money saved, you might be considering giving some of it away while you are still alive via what is known in estate planning jargon as a living inheritance. Depending on your desires, you can give your beneficiaries a portion of or all of the inheritance you intend to give them.
Estate planning is commonly associated with preparing for asset distribution and financial management in the event of the estate plan owner’s incapacitation or death. However, an estate plan can protect more than just people and what they have worked so hard during their lifetimes to build. A carefully crafted Washington state estate plan can also protect pets.
Despite being divorced, you may still be able to collect social security benefits through your ex-spouse. Even if you went through a high-conflict divorce or are not on good terms with your ex-spouse currently, they cannot stop you from collecting these benefits if you are eligible. Likewise, your ex-spouse does not need to permit you to apply for social security benefits or have previously completed an application themselves.
If you live in Washington State and have an estranged family member, are you worried about them contesting your will after you die? Well, don’t worry quite yet. There are a variety of criteria an individual must meet to contest a will in the state of Washington.
Depending on your situation, there might also be measures you can take as you revisit your existing estate plan or create a new one to cause them to think twice about doing so. Here is what you need to know about whether an estranged family member can contest a will in Washington state.
When parents go through a divorce, child custody can be one of the hardest issues to deal with. But increasingly in American households, pets are part of the family, and separating can create similar concerns over who gets the family pet.
As a Seattle entrepreneur, you’ve undoubtedly dedicated countless hours and resources to building a successful business. You’ve dotted all of your I’s and crossed all of your T’s. But have you considered what will happen to your business after you're…
In today’s world of fast-paced decision-making and on-demand solutions, such as DIY divorces, it is not surprising that many couples contemplate divorce the moment they find themselves unhappily married. Our culture’s fickle mentality often seems to advocate for the idea…
Far too many families end up fighting, or at least experiencing tension, over a family inheritance, but it does not have to be that way. Having counseled families for years, we offer the following advice to help your family avoid fighting over your property — while you are here and after you die.
If you are getting divorced, you may be worried about what it will do to your finances. Maybe your finances are heavily intertwined with your spouse’s, or you are worried about what your future will look like, given these changes.…
Establishing paternity and parentage is important for many families and parents. Regardless of why you want to establish paternity and parentage, the process has the potential to be confusing, especially if you are unfamiliar with the terms and rules for…
You can use Collaborative Law to support your process of creating and negotiating a prenup with your partner.