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How is art divvied up in a North Carolina divorce?

Artwork tends to have a lot of sentimental value in addition to its real monetary value for the families that own it. In some cases, a piece of art is passed down through generations. In other cases, a piece of art is bought during a marriage with the intention to pass it down to future generations. However, one thing is for sure, such treasured items as sculptures, paintings, drawings and other works can be difficult to divide during a North Carolina divorce.

In fact, some attorneys would compare the heated battles over a piece of art to child custody disagreements given the level of intensity to which they can sometimes rise. Parts of the problem is the personal connection people have to their art possessions, the fact that replacing a piece of art is not as simple as going to the store and buying another one and the fact that you can't split a piece of art in half.

Another issue relating to art is the differing opinions about its value. Perhaps a spouse would like to keep the painting that has hung over the fireplace for the last decade, and says that it was appraised at $1,000 in value. However, the other spouse, who will gladly give up the painting, says that another appraiser has valued it at $10,000. When you also consider the fact that art, which has appreciated in value, will have capital gains taxes associated with it in the event of a sale, one can quickly see the complexities involved with dividing art assets in a divorce.

North Carolina residents in the midst of divorce proceedings who have a large art collection may want to discuss these assets with a qualified divorce lawyer. A lawyer can offer sound advice as to how to go about equitably dividing art assets.

Source: Huffington Post, "Tips for dividing art in a divorce," accessed Oct. 27, 2016

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