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How do divorcing couples divide valuable artwork?

Divorce is a stressful time for all Washington residents, whether you are barely scraping by or whether you are in a financially comfortable position. However, when you are a high-asset couple, you may have certain considerations that do not apply to all couples going through a permanent breakup, such as a significant amount of luxury assets. In this situation, how do you and your former spouse decide who gets to keep the artwork? 

According to Town & Country, a leading lifestyle magazine, a recent increase in the values of artwork means that trying to determine its disposition during a divorce has become even more difficult. This is especially true when the appraised value of your artwork far exceeds that of the home you must split with your ex. If a couple cannot resolve who gets to keep a piece of art, you may be forced to hire appraisers, sell it and split the proceeds. Sometimes this is not as easy as it sounds, since the true current worth of your artwork cannot be determined until it actually gets sold. 

One way to protect your art prior to a divorce is to put it in a prenuptial agreement. This allows you to retain your valuable or beloved object in the event of dissolution of your marriage. A prenup can also be structured to contain a framework for future acquisitions. These provisions would later dictate specifically what to do with any artwork that you obtain during the course of the marriage and avoid future complications during divorce proceeds. 

The above information is intended for informative purposes only and is not to be interpreted as legal advice. 

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