Divorce can be a nasty emotional scar, even when partners have more or less agreed they have had enough. The worst effect of the end of a marriage often is visited on the children, who now have to adapt to a new life with scheduled time between homes. If a couple has no children, the aspect that is most difficult is a fair split of assets and finances.
Young couples with little to share may not think this matters, but you never know when the stakes could be raised. A couple going through a divorce in Michigan just ended up splitting more than $30 million after the husband won the windfall in the state lottery.
Even though the couple had been separated for two years, a court in the Wolverine State determined that assets won or received by one of the spouses were joint until the divorce was finalized in 2018. The husband purchased the ticket in 2013.
The decision was originally made by a mediator, who was designated by both individuals to make certain decisions on how assets and property would be divided. The mediator determined that the lottery ticket was marital property, and an appeals court agreed with his decision.
Mediation is one of many options available to divorcing couples who are having trouble making or agreeing on decisions that affect fortunes or lives after a divorce. Legal representation is often a good idea and applies to mediations and negotiations as well as court appearances and documents to finalize divorces. An attorney also ensures no one is alone while going through this difficult process.