News Category: divorce


Active-passive categorization skews appreciation analysis, court finds

Valuators may think they know all there’s to know about quantifying the appreciation of nonmarital property by using the active versus passive framework. Think again. A recent Florida divorce case illustrates that the premature categorization of assets may lead to an improper valuation. Read more >>

Guidance for valuators on Washington state double dip jurisprudence

Double dipping is a tricky issue because different states have developed different approaches to it. Valuators specializing in divorce issues must know the controlling case law in the state in which they practice. A recent decision by the Washington state Court of Appeals clarifies its state's analytical framework in a case featuring a successful management consulting business the husband had set up and grown during the marriage. Read more >>

Valuation of key marital asset demands expert opinion

In a Mississippi divorce, the husband's sole-owned fitness training company was the key asset. An accurate valuation was central to achieving an equitable distribution of property, but the parties did not hire experts or even submit much financial information to the trial court. Read more >>

Tenn. appeals court muddies the waters regarding use of DLOM in divorce valuation

So much for clarity. A recent Tennessee appeals court decision hinged on the issue of whether a marketability discount was appropriate in the valuation of the husband’s interests in three real estate development partnerships. In reviewing the trial court’s analysis, the appeals court suggested that the lower court misunderstood the principle behind DLOM but ultimately upheld the lower court’s findings. The resulting decision leaves valuators in a pickle as to when to apply the discount and at what rate. Read more >>

Why Bankruptcy Court declines to be bound by divorce valuation

Following the divorce, the husband filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and asked for confirmation of his plan. The issue was whether the plan could meet the liquidation test applicable under the Bankruptcy Code’s section 1325(a)(4). In essence, the test requires that creditors in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy receive present value payments that are at least equal to the amount the creditors would receive in a Chapter 7 case. Read more >>

Arkansas Supreme Court reverses itself on active appreciation in divorce

Under Arkansas statutory law, the increase in the value of nonmarital property is nonmarital property. But in a line of decisions going back nearly 30 years, the Arkansas Supreme Court created an exception to the statutory rule by way of the active appreciation doctrine, which says that if the growth in value is the result of the owner spouse's efforts, the increase in value is subject to marital distribution. Read more >>

Florida court resists call for bright-line rule on active-passive appreciation

In this age of entrepreneurship, valuators working on divorce cases often run into the issue of active and passive appreciation. But this issue not only comes up in the context of one spouse's ownership of a business that qualifies as separate property, as a recent Florida appeals court ruling shows. The case involved the husband's separate ownership of stock in a company for which he worked and the stock's substantial appreciation in value during the marriage. The wife asked for a rule "that all appreciation of the stock of a company for which a spouse works is a marital asset." Read more >>

Industry-specific empirical support for passive appreciation

A survey is open for respondents to indicate which industries they would like to see analyzed for economic causal factors and their elasticities in order to better determine passive appreciation in business assets in a divorce context. The resulting analyses will be published. Read more >>

Key ruling on enterprise goodwill from South Carolina Supreme Court

Alaska High Court Affirms Zero Goodwill for Naturopathic Practice

Appeals Court backs away from 'Heller' double dip framework

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