While most divorcing couples will automatically begin negotiating the valuation and division of tangible assets such as the matrimonial home, vehicles or a family business, the couple must also consider complicated assets such as retirement funds, stocks and deferred compensation. In recent years, an new type of property has created an additional layer of complexity to the proceedings. These are called digital assets.
Most commonly, digital assets began as shared collections of vacation photos, for example, or music converted from compact disk to mp3 format for easy storage on a computer. In the last decade, however, these online properties have continued to grow. Digital assets can now include:
- Social media presence: While certain pages such as LinkedIn are unique for each individual, it is not uncommon for a married couple to manage a social media page as a team. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, for example, could be the work of both individuals. Vacation photos, home renovation updates and shared friends – these pages can be difficult to divide.
- Virtual currency: Commonly referred to as cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum and others can represent a significant investment with astonishing value.
- Entertainment collections: Couples will often devote significant time and effort into building digital entertainment collections. These collections can be movies, music, games or books. As a shared asset, it might be challenging to divide these properties.
- Online storefronts: It is not uncommon for a couple to work together to build a successful eBay or Facebook Marketplace storefront. From customer relationships to transaction history, dividing this business can be difficult.
A divorcing couple will face numerous challenges through the process. It is important to work with a skilled family law attorney who can provide the guidance and representation you need from start to finish.