Written by Jonathan Breeden
Divorce is deeply emotional, but it is also a financial process. Your divorce impacts your financial stability: now and in the future. When you are facing a self-employed divorce, it can be challenging to make sure the court has the correct income information. Because of this, it’s essential that you ensure all of your rights are protected.
To protect yourself, you must work with a lawyer who is ready to gather all the evidence needed to make a strong case for you. With offices in Raleigh, Garner, Angier, and Smithfield, NC, the Breeden Law Office is ready to fight for everything you deserve and protect all of your assets.
Assets that are earned or obtained (except for a few exceptions like gifts or personal injury awards) during marriage are considered marital property. All marital property is divided in a divorce. North Carolina divorce law relies on a principle called equitable distribution when determining how to divide assets. Equitable distribution requires that marital assets be divided in a way that is fair but necessarily equal.
The court requires that both spouses provide a complete accounting of all of the marriage assets, as well as the incomes of both spouses. Each spouse must provide financial disclosures, listing all the information they have about marital assets and income. Both spouses are required to be honest and transparent about this information. However, it’s up to you and your attorney to be sure the information your spouse provides is complete and accurate.
You should go over the information yourself, looking for things that are missing. Your attorney can help you with this process. It’s helpful if you have copies of things like bank accounts and retirement account that you can share with your attorney. You want to be sure all assets and income are listed completely.
If your spouse is self-employed it can be hard to verify the accuracy of the information they provide about their income and business. Since they work for themselves, they are the ones doing most of the accounting and management of funds and assets.
It can be easy for them to fudge the numbers, and make it seem as if they are earning less money than they are. Doing this might result in lower alimony or child support payments and could also result in them getting a larger share of the marital assets if they are able to convince the court that their numbers are correct.
The more they can minimize their earnings and their assets, the better off they will be in the outcome of the divorce.
If your spouse is self-employed, you should do as much preparation as you can before you file. Get copies of everything you can and print statements off from online in case your spouse changes passwords. Make notes about work your spouse does and clients and customers they work with.
Your family lawyer can subpoena records, statements, and documents from your spouse, their clients, their bank, and other sources of information to verify their income and business assets. Your attorney can also subpoena witnesses to testify in court about what your spouse earns, is paid, and owns.
If your spouse is self-employed you need an experienced, aggressive, and thorough North Carolina divorce lawyer who can make sure accurate information is reported so you can get the payments and property division you deserve. The Breeden Law Office understands how to protect your rights if your spouse is self-employed.