Indeed, asset division is an important part of divorce and can raise passionate arguments regarding how the marital estate should be apportioned. This could be complicated when marital assets must be sold (such as a home or business) and no consensus exists regarding a fair market value. The sweat equity put into a business or personal modifications to a home may lead to mixed emotions over the true value of such property.
When this occurs, it is important to consider the service of a professional appraiser.
For homes, an appraiser may use a comparative market analysis to find a proposed value based on the square footage of the home, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms and other amenities balanced against recent sales of similar homes in the area. In some circumstances, the appraisal may be more of an art than a science, and couples who disagree with the appraisal are entitled to challenge it.
The same analysis applies with the potential sale of a business, but the variables may be different in that the future profitability and past equity may be included in the equation.
As such, if no consensus can be reached, it is important for couples to consider the ways to reach an objective value of property before resorting to litigation. After all, it does not make sense spending money on litigation when there are cheaper alternatives.
If you have questions about property valuation in divorce, an experienced family law attorney can advise you.
The preceding is provided for informational purposes only.