High Asset Divorce Attorney

Our High-Asset Divorce Attorney Protects Your Assets

The higher your assets, the more is at stake in your divorce — and the more you have to lose. While all divorcing couples are pressed to make life-altering decisions affecting their children, living arrangements, and financial futures, those with high income and assets will have substantial financial and tax issues in divorce. How complicated your divorce becomes depends on what assets are involved, whether there are child custody and parental responsibility issues, and how willing you and your divorcing spouse are to come to agreements.

At Wolfe & Stec, Ltd., our skilled Illinois divorce lawyers have extensive experience protecting the interests of doctors, professionals, CEOs, entrepreneurs, and spouses of top-salaried individuals in divorce and family law cases. Our experience in high-asset divorce gives us a clear understanding of the financial and emotional stakes when family-owned businesses, real estate, pensions, or stock options are in play during marital property division.

Protect your assets. For a free initial consultation with a knowledgeable DuPage County high-asset divorce lawyer, call 630-305-0222.

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How a High Asset Divorce Lawyer Works for You

Why Choose Us?

There are many divorce lawyers in Illinois, and you should make sure you choose one you can trust and who has the experience needed to handle high-asset cases. At Wolfe & Stec, Ltd., we are committed to providing legal representation of the highest quality, have substantial experience in contested family law matters, and are aggressive in protecting our clients’ rights and assets. At the same time, we focus on preserving relationships, which is often essential when divorcing spouses need to continue working in the same business or industry — as well for co-parenting.

Here are some reasons why we believe you should choose our high-asset divorce attorney in Woodridge.

  • All of our attorneys have extensive backgrounds and proven track records of success and have helped many satisfied clients in the past. Attorney Natalie M. Stec, born and raised in Illinois, has been practicing for over 20 years and concentrates on pre- and post-decree marital and family law cases, including custody, visitation, support, and paternity matters. You can read more about our attorneys here.
  • We concentrate on divorce and family law so we understand what you are going through and will help guide you through the intricate legal processes involved.
  • We utilize skilled professionals such as financial advisors to determine the short- and long-term impacts of dividing property, and we consult forensic accountants to determine whether your spouse is attempting to hide assets.
  • We are available 24/7.
  • We are local and familiar with local issues and local courts in Chicago, Woodridge, and throughout DuPage County.
  • We provide free, confidential, and no-obligation consultations to evaluate your case and are happy to give advice to help you in any way we can.
  • We are skilled negotiators, but if a fair settlement cannot be reached, we will strongly represent your interests in court.

Our high-asset divorce attorney in Woodridge understands that when people have more to lose, they are more apt to have conflicts and less likely to compromise. As a result, we strive to find a balance between zealously protecting our clients’ rights while preserving relationships and avoiding additional conflict.

We will be there for you throughout the entire legal process, negotiating with opposition attorneys, handling issues as they arise, and fighting for the best outcome possible for you and your children. Call today at 630-305-0222.

High-Net-Worth Divorce Attorney Handles Asset Division

What is Considered a High-Asset Divorce?

High-asset divorces are generally considered to be those that involve more than $5 million in multiple liquid assets. Assets that may include business interests, inheritances and trusts, retirement accounts and pension plans, real estate, jewelry and collectibles can be difficult to value and categorize as marital or non-marital property. Dividing these assets requires hiring attorneys who are adept at properly classifying and pricing these assets and who work with experts that specialize in the areas of investigating, appraising and accounting.

Rules for Dividing Assets in Illinois

Illinois is an equitable distribution state, which means marital property does not have to be divided equally. Instead, property is divided in a manner that the courts feel is fair after evaluating the circumstances.

To do this, Illinois law considers factors that include:

  • the contribution of each spouse to the increase or decrease in value of property
  • the contribution of a spouse as a homemaker or to the family unit
  • the value of the property assigned to each spouse
  • the length of the marriage
  • the economic circumstances of each spouse, including the desirability of awarding the family home to the spouse having custody of the children
  • obligations from a prior marriage
  • the age, health, occupation, and skills of the parties
  • the custody provisions for children and whether there is to be alimony
  • any prenuptial agreement
  • the tax consequences of the property division
  • any dissipation, wasting or hiding of assets
  • the opportunity to earn income and acquire assets in the future.

Determining Marital or Non-marital Property

In dividing property, the courts will consider whether the property is marital, non-marital or commingled and then assign a monetary value on the marital property and debt. After that, the marital assets will be distributed in an equitable fashion.

Marital property consists of all assets you or your spouse acquired during the marriage and before your divorce judgment. It also includes non-marital property that has been transferred into co-ownership and commingled.

Separate or non-marital property is that which is owned solely by one spouse or the other. It cannot be divided by the courts in a divorce. In addition, if you and your spouse have an existing prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, certain property may be excluded from the marital estate.

When assets have been mixed or commingled, it needs to be determined whether property is marital or separate. Even if one spouse may have acquired assets before marriage, if the asset appreciated in value in during the marriage, it may be considered as marital property and be subject to division.

What Assets Are Divided in Divorce?

Common assets at issue in high-asset divorces include:

  • Professional practices and family-owned businesses
  • Retirement funds, 401(k) plans, pensions and benefits
  • Other financial assets such as IRAs, stocks, stock options and bonds
  • Local, interstate and international bank accounts
  • International, offshore and overseas assets
  • Houses, vacation homes and investment properties
  • Valuable belongings and collectibles such as antique cars, jewelry or art
  • Compensation awards from workers’ compensation, personal injury or medical malpractice cases
  • Vehicles including cars, boats, motorcycles and recreational vehicles
  • Professional degrees and the “enhanced earning capacity” of any degree, license or certification obtained during the marriage.

High-asset divorce is complicated by many factors. There are a greater number and value of assets than in a typical divorce, and planning needs to be made for equitable distribution of multiple homes and properties, valuable belongings, wide-reaching and international investments, professional practices and businesses, retirement accounts and other substantial assets. Our high-asset divorce team will do everything possible to ensure a fair distribution.

High-Asset Divorce Lawyer in Woodridge Protects Clients

Complex Divorces Require Special Skill

High-asset divorces involve complex issues and may require investigation and locating hidden assets. Our attorneys dig deep to obtain a true picture of the situation and call upon skilled financial analysts and valuation specialists when needed, including:

  • Financial analysts — help evaluate assets, provide advice on preserving income and avoiding negative tax implications, especially involving benefit plans, business entities, spousal support, and real estate. They plan for your future financial needs.
  • Forensic accountants — can assist in tracing investments and uncovering hidden assets and undisclosed asset transfers, and they are qualified to accurately label property as marital or separate.

In addition, our attorneys can help by examining, enforcing and challenging prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. We will work closely with you to perform a thorough analysis of how your assets and debts were handled during the marriage, protect your right to your separate property and to seek a favorable and equitable distribution of your marital property. We protect our clients from becoming financially liable for debts associated with their spouse’s business enterprises and will assist you in determining what additional experts may be needed to protect your financial future.

We believe it is best to deal with high-asset property division issues amicably and settle outside of court if possible. However, if necessary, we will aggressively fight for your rights in court. Call us today at (630) 305-0222.

High-Asset Divorce Mistakes

Our High-Net-Worth Attorneys Prevent Mistakes

In any divorce, making mistakes can be costly, but there is much more to lose if your divorce is a high-asset one. Here are some common mistakes that divorcing spouses make:

  • Hiding Assets – Everything earned or acquired by either spouse during the marriage must be included when dividing assets, including any funds, property, or valuables the other spouse does not know about. When large numbers are involved, it may be particularly tempting to try to hide assets or give misleading information, but this can come back to haunt you if this behavior is discovered in forensic investigations. Lies and fraud will result in the loss of credibility during divorce proceedings and will anger judges who are deciding on your fate; you may be required to reimburse your spouse for marital assets that were concealed.
  • Not Hiring Proper Evaluators for Assets – To get optimum value and an equitable division of property, you should have an evaluator or forensic accountant value your home, business or other large asset.
  • Waiving the Right to Discovery – Even if you think you know everything about your spouse’s finances, you still need to go through discovery. Discovery is the process of obtaining documentation relative to all of both parties’ income, debts and assets, and it should go back for years. During discovery, divorcing spouses each sign affidavits indicating they have made a full and fair disclosure of their property, assets, and liabilities, which can be used against them if not true.
  • Divorcing Without an Attorney – In a high-asset divorce, you have a lot to lose. It is particularly important to have legal guidance and know what your rights are. Ignorance will not be a defense later if you try to obtain something that you were not entitled to or fail to receive something you should have obtained. Your attorney will know what to ask for, how to address issues, and how to fight for the best settlement possible.

Call Our DuPage County High-Net-Worth Divorce Lawyer for Help

The skilled Illinois family law attorneys at Wolfe & Stec, Ltd. know the laws, the courts and the system and can guide you through every aspect of your high-asset divorce. Our fundamental success as a law firm has been in building quality relationships with our clients. We are dedicated to personal attention, responsiveness, and accessibility, and we have a long history of success.

Don’t delay. For a free initial consultation with an experienced and compassionate DuPage County divorce lawyer, call 630-305-0222 today.

Attorney Natalie Stec

Natalie M. Stec, born and raised in Illinois, and earned her Bachelor of Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her practice has been concentrated in significant pre and post decree marital and family law cases; including custody, visitation, support, and paternity matters. She has important criminal defense experience in both misdemeanor and felony cases. She is a very dedicated and passionate litigator. [ Attorney Bio ]

Woodridge Illinois Law Firm

3321 Hobson Road, Suite B
Woodridge, IL 60517
Phone: 630-305-0222

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