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Are you entitled to stock-related assets during divorce?

Because divorce requires the examinations of many areas of your life and your spouse's life, the process can take time if you hope to ensure that you have not overlooked important details. Though the idea of finishing the process quickly may seem more appealing, the possibility exists that you could end up with outcomes that seem less than satisfactory if you make hasty decisions. When you must deal with complex assets, the chance for potential mistakes could increase.

If you suspect that your spouse may have obtained certain benefits from his or her company that allow for stock-related income, you may not entirely understand how those benefits could play into your property division proceedings. However, you may want to find out more on stock options and restricted stock as you could potentially have reason to gain a portion of those benefits during asset division.

Stock options

One type of benefit that relates to this complex asset is stock options. With stock options, your spouse's company gave him or her the ability to purchase company stock at a pre-set price. This set price means that he or she can use that price in the future to buy stock even though the price may have increased. After purchasing at a lower price, your spouse could then sell the shares at the current higher price for a profit, depending on the exact values at the time of buying and selling.

Restricted stock

The second type of stock that could apply to your case is restricted stock. This type of situation means that your spouse's company gave him or her company stock at no cost. However, rather than simply taking on those stocks, certain conditions must be met before your spouse could reap the benefits financially. For example, he or she may have to have worked at the company for a certain amount of time.

Discovering stock-related assets

Because your spouse may not have benefitted from his or her stock options or restricted stock during your marriage, you may not even fully know whether these assets exist. Your spouse may prefer to keep you in the dark in hopes of avoiding the division of those assets. Therefore, it may be in your best interests to determine whether such assets exist and how they may play into your divorce proceedings.

These complex assets may make your division process more complicated, but you could also end up with a favorable outcome if your address such assets correctly.

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William C. Gentry, Attorney at Law

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William C. Gentry, Attorney at Law
506 Roswell Street SE, Suite 240
Marietta, GA 30060

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