Hansen Law, PLLC

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When the queen weighs in on a high asset divorce

Imagine what would happen if mothers-in-law in the United States were allowed to determine how marital assets should be divided in divorce. Such situations would likely lead to some highly contentious courtroom battles. Washington happens to be one of only nine community property states; this means that, even in a high asset divorce, all marital property is divided 50/50 between spouses, and a mother-in-law has no say.

That's not the way it was when Princess Diana divorced her husband Charles more than a decade ago, however. Many readers may recall the tragic news of Diana's sudden death in a car accident not long after. What most don't know, however, is that, before the accident occurred, it was Diana's former mother-in-law, the queen, who was given much say over which possessions Diana could keep and where she would live, etc.

Diana and Charles had a co-parenting arrangement for their two sons after their divorce. The boys attended boarding school but would take turns staying with one or the other parent during holidays. When it came to the beautiful diamond tiara Diana had worn at her wedding, though, the queen said she was not allowed to keep it. She did allow Diana to continue living at Buckingham Palace.

Most Washington couples who divorce never have to worry about paparazzi or whether their morning newspapers will carry headlines regarding their own personal lives. Many are indeed concerned with property division in a high asset divorce, especially if there's no prenuptial agreement. Obtaining a positive outcome when disagreements regarding marital property arise is often likelier if one relies on aggressive and experienced legal representation in court.

Source: popsugar.com, "What Did Princess Diana Do After Divorce From Prince Charles", Brittney Stephens, May 17, 2017

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