Divorce proceeding in California may center on artwork

Just as the family house can bring two married people together, it can also tear the two individuals apart even more during a divorce proceeding. This is because people often have emotional ties to the marital home, so both parties may naturally want to stay in it. In the same way, a valuable piece of artwork can spark conflict between two individuals going through a divorce in California.

Dividing cars and even money can often be easier than dividing artwork because of the emotional attachment that a person may have to a particular painting or bust, for instance. Being willing to compromise on who gets which paintings can be challenging. However, understanding tax laws can help people to make more informed decisions when it comes to divvying up the art, as strategic art distributing can lead to minimized taxes.

Having the artwork appraised is an important step in determining the works' value. Then, the couple can split them up in as fair a way as possible. One of the parties may even be willing to give up certain other assets, like a family car or money in the bank, to get a valuable piece of artwork, if the two can agree on this.

When two people agree to work together and approach a divorce peaceably in California, their chances of having a happier outcome increase. The two individuals can part ways feeling as satisfied as possible financially, considering the circumstances. Having a judge make the decision for them is their only option if they can't negotiate successfully, but it's an option that may lead to an unsatisfactory result for the two individuals.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Tips for Dividing Art in a Divorce or Death", Daniel Grant, Sept. 21, 2014

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