Any divorce in New York can be difficult and rife with issues in dispute. If it is a high-asset divorce, complex asset division, disagreements over property and arguments as to whether a prenuptial agreement is valid are real possibilities.
These issues are magnified if it is a high-profile couple and their alleged wealth reaches the hundreds of millions of dollars. When there is any kind of divorce, having legal assistance is important. But when it is a divorce in which the amount of money is so massive, it is crucial.
Previous posts have discussed the divorce of the actor Robert De Niro and his estranged wife Grace Hightower. Now, the details of the proceeding are coming to light, as the couple is in the middle of a contentious battle over their marital assets.
The prenup says that she is supposed to receive $500,000, an apartment that is worth $6 million, $1 million annually and half what their marital home is worth. She says she earns $15,000 annually on her own. The 75-year-old De Niro is accused of not keeping his 64-year-old wife up to date on their finances since 2008.
Since Mr. De Niro has taken part in 38 films and 35 businesses since the signing of the prenup, she is asking for more money. Mr. De Niro is a part owner of Nobu, a chain of popular restaurants. The judge is encouraging the parties to negotiate a settlement. They are also embroiled in a child custody dispute over their 7-year-old daughter. They also have an adult son, 21, together.
Whether it is from the perspective of the spouse who earned the bulk of the money and brought the assets into the marriage or the spouse who had less and might have signed a prenup, it is essential to have a legal advocate who understands the problems associated with a high asset divorce. As the case moves forward, understanding how to comb through the finances and come to an accurate assessment of what the assets are worth is key. Calling for advice with property division in a high asset divorce is vital.