A day to remember: valuation date

On behalf of The Marks Law Firm, L.L.C. posted in Family Law on Thursday, October 27, 2011

You want the Maserati, the house and the Krugerrands. Your spouse wants the St. Louis Rams tickets, the stocks and the vacation home in Aspen. But how do you know if the split is fair?

When a couple goes through divorce, one of the difficult hurdles to get over is the division of marital property.

When dividing those assets, each one will have to be assigned a value on a particular day. Divorce finance expert Jeff Landers writes in Forbes that that day is known as the valuation date; a day to remember.

As many couples discover, the problem with the valuation date is that the values of assets can vary significantly depending on the valuation date. In Missouri, the valuation date is the day of the trial, but in New York, the court selects a valuation date, while other states use the day the divorce was filed, the date of separation or another date.

So as you go through the divorce process, Landers says, you’ll want to work with your divorce attorney to ensure that the valuation date is one that works to your advantage.

Landers is quick to point out that the valuation date should not be confused with the date of separation. The date of separation is a significant date of its own; it’s the day you and your spouse separated and were no longer a couple. It helps to determine which assets should be considered marital assets and which assets are to be considered separate property.

Of course, each divorce is unique and should be discussed with an experienced family law attorney in the detail that’s impossible in a blog post.

Source: Forbes, “How the Valuation Dates of Different Assets Are Decided During Divorce,” Jeff Landers, Oct. 12, 2011

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