As COVID-19 sweeps across the United States, most people are rightfully concerned about their health and the well-being of their loved ones. However, the financial markets have also been rocked by the coronavirus. If you are going through a divorce right now, you may be concerned about how your assets are affected and what this means for your separation. At the Elliott Frazier Law Firm, our Greenville divorce attorneys want to discuss what this can mean for your property division.
How could coronavirus affect your divorce?
South Carolina is an “equitable distribution” state when it comes to property division in a divorce. This means that any “marital property” acquired during the course of the marriage will be split between the two parties. Many assets a couple has may depend heavily on the stock market. If you are divorcing, do you or your spouse have any of the following between you?
- Investment portfolios with stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, REITs, etc.
- Retirement accounts such as 401ks, IRAs, pensions, etc.
If you have any of these, they will likely need to be divided during a divorce. However, over the last few weeks, the stock market has erratically risen up and down and has been as much as 25% below all-time highs set in February. For those who have been building retirement or investment accounts for decades, this could represent hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses in just a matter of weeks.
Most financial advisors tell people not to “panic sell,” but many people do. For those who began the divorce process a few weeks ago, the valuation of your assets may look quite different right now. This could have a significant impact on both spouses, particularly one of lesser means.
We are ready to help
If you are going through a divorce and are concerned about the effects of COVID-19 on your assets, you should speak to a skilled attorney today. At the Elliott Frazier Law Firm, we have vast experience handling the division of assets and will help you get through this. You can contact our Greenville divorce attorney for a consultation today so we can sit down make a solid plan moving forward.