Colorado readers who were fans of the TV series "Nip/Tuck" may remember its star, Dylan Walsh. Walsh was in the news recently, when a judge ordered him to turn over almost half his assets and future earnings to his ex-wife.
Walsh and his wife began divorce proceedings more than two years ago. Recently they reached an agreement, which was signed by a judge. Under the property division agreement, Walsh must pay over half the royalties from "Nip/Tuck" as well as other television shows and movies to his former spouse. In addition, he has agreed to give her a lump sum payment of $118,376 and pay spousal support in an undisclosed amount. The couple has an eight-year-old daughter; they will share joint legal custody of the child and Walsh will pay child support.
Property division can be one of the most difficult aspects of a divorce. In Colorado, the courts make an equitable division of marital property, which is property obtained during the marriage by either spouse. Equitable does not necessarily mean equal; the judge simply makes a division which he or she believes is fair and just under the circumstances. Non-marital property, or separate property, is property either spouse brought to the marriage, or property received as a gift or through an inheritance. It maintains its separate character in a divorce and stays with the spouse who owns it. When it appreciates in value during the marriage, however, that appreciation is considered marital property, to be divided equitably.
Valuing assets can often be a challenge, especially in the case of self-employed people. An accurate valuation is critical to achieving a truly equitable division. In high asset divorces, a family law attorney with an in-depth understanding of property valuation issues can be critical.