Ways to Divide an Investment Account in an Illinois Divorce

 Posted on March 29, 2024 in Asset Valuation

IL divorce lawyerAn investment account can be challenging to divide during a divorce. When you and your spouse own numerous stocks in an investment account, dividing them equitably can be mathematically and practically challenging. There is likely to be some risk involved if you retain ownership of some stocks but not others. Your shares could appreciate while your spouse’s depreciate, or vice versa. Or, you could miss out on appreciating stocks by selling them and dividing the value. It is important to work closely with a DuPage County, IL high-asset divorce attorney who is knowledgeable in investment finances while you are dividing an investment account during your divorce.

Methods for Equitably Dividing an Investment Account

Risk management is always a priority when you and your spouse are determining how to divide your investment accounts during the divorce process. You will likely have multiple options, including:

  • Dividing stocks by current value - One approach is to look only at the current value of each stock you own and create a 50/50 division. This solution may work well if your account has been relatively steady and predictable in value. The risk is that one of you will retain ownership of stocks that are expected to decrease in value based on market trends. 
  • Dividing stocks by predicted value - This approach considers market trends to determine how your stocks will likely change in value in the coming months or years. Factoring in anticipated appreciation or depreciation can lead to a more fair division in the long term. The risk is that market trends will be upset by a change in the economy. 
  • Sell the stocks and reinvest your share of the profit - Another option is for the spouses to sell every stock they own and divide the profits equitably. Each spouse can then reinvest, save, or spend his or her own share of the proceeds as he or she pleases. 
  • Do not divide the account - Another option is to not divide the account at all and to maintain the status quo of joint ownership. This may work well if you are amicable or at least civil. It is very important to make a plan for how decisions will be made regarding future withdrawals or sales. 
  • Let the court decide - This approach can be highly risky, as courts are not prone to using more innovative solutions. However, if you and your spouse absolutely cannot agree on a method of division, allowing the court to decide may be the only way to move forward. 

Contact a Wheaton, IL Complex Divorce Attorney

Andrew Cores Family Law Group is uniquely experienced in a high-asset and complex divorce. Our experienced DuPage County, IL high-asset divorce lawyers will work with you and your spouse to fairly divide your investment accounts. Contact us at 630-871-1002 for a complimentary consultation.

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