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Who gets the summer home in a high-asset divorce?

On Behalf of | Oct 19, 2023 | High Asset Divorce

When high-net-worth couples decide to part ways, the division of their assets can become a complex process.

Among the many assets at stake, the fate of a summer home often becomes a central point of contention. In New Jersey, this picturesque property can take on a significant role in a high-asset divorce.

Property valuation

The first step in the process is determining the value of the summer home. Valuation typically involves the engagement of real estate experts to provide a fair and accurate estimate. This step helps to establish a starting point for negotiations, ensuring transparency in the asset division.

Equitable distribution

New Jersey follows the principle of equitable distribution, which means that marital assets get divided fairly but not necessarily equally. The court considers numerous factors, such as the duration of the marriage, each spouse’s financial contributions and their respective needs. The summer home’s value and the use it serves may influence its division.

Buyout option

In some cases, one spouse may have a stronger attachment to the summer home or the financial means to retain it. In such situations, a buyout arrangement may allow one spouse to purchase the other’s share. This can be a viable option when dividing the property isn’t practical.

Co-ownership arrangements

When neither spouse wishes to part with the summer home, co-ownership can be an alternative solution. This involves shared ownership and responsibility for the property. Creating clear guidelines for its use and maintenance is crucial to avoid future disputes.

While the U.S. has seen a decline in divorces, with a rate of 2.5 per 1,000 people in 2021, divorce still happens. When it comes to high-asset divorces, the goal is to ensure that both parties find a reasonable and just resolution as they navigate the end of their marriage.


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