Division Of Investment Portfolios In Divorce

The potential profitability of any investment depends in large part on when and under what circumstances you sell it. The value of securities, real estate, and other assets tends to be cyclical — and also subject to diminution by fees, taxes and penalties.

To maximize your earnings, timing is everything. Selling off key assets should not depend on the timing of your divorce.

Protect Your Investment Assets Even As You Divide And Distribute Them

The process of dividing substantial or complex assets for equitable distribution in divorce can be challenging. Both parties seek to protect the current and future value of the assets, but that cannot be accomplished by simply selling everything at once and divvying up the proceeds.

At Cognetti & Associates, we have substantial experience helping high net-worth clients achieve divorce settlements that accurately categorize and value marital property and allow that property to be sold off at the opportune moment to maximize gains. Led by veteran attorneys Maria Cognetti and Dave Schanbacher, we can provide knowledgeable legal direction and access to the financial expertise required to equitably divide assets of any type, such as:

  • Family-owned businesses and professional practices
  • Second homes, vacation homes and investment real estate
  • Retirement accounts such as 401(k)s, 403(b)s and IRAs
  • Pensions, annuities and insurance benefits
  • Stocks, stock options, mutual funds and equities
  • Bonds, bond funds and money market instruments
  • Foreign currency and international investments
  • Loans
  • Intellectual property assets

In Pennsylvania, investments made during the course of the marriage are presumed to be marital property. However, you and your spouse may have owned investment assets before the marriage. In such cases, absence of an enforceable pre- or post-nuptial agreement, Pennsylvania courts presume that any increase in the assets' value that occurred during the marriage is marital property which must be divided.

The first step is to catalog all of your assets, regardless of whether you believe they are individually owned. Your divorce lawyer will evaluate your overall portfolio and assess what is clearly a non-marital asset, what is clearly a marital asset, and where there are questions to be resolved.

Next, Cognetti & Associates will obtain an expert valuation of each asset to be divided. We maintain strong working relationships with well-respected Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firms and accountants so you will feel confident in the result.

During the process of dividing the assets, we will advise and represent you as we negotiate for the property settlement that best meets your needs and those of your family. This may include trading certain assets for others of an equivalent value, which can minimize the number of assets that must be sold. It may also involve making specific arrangements for the management of the investments until division is final, including how and when individual assets should be sold.

Skillful negotiation of these details is crucial to avoiding undue taxation, penalties and costly fees. Our legal team has more than 35 years of experience handling the complicated financial considerations that arise in divorce and family law matters.

Sophisticated Advocacy In Marital Asset Division

To arrange an initial consultation to discuss how to protect the profitability of your investments until divorce distribution, contact Cognetti & Associates today at 717-909-4060 or using our online form. Our offices are located in Camp Hill near Harrisburg, and we represent clients across Pennsylvania.