Divorce is never easy. Although every couple must face the difficult task of property division, this portion of the divorce proceeding can be particularly difficult for those with a complex mix of assets. These difficulties were recently highlighted in the split of a couple well-known in the real estate market in New York.

This real estate tycoon couple recently filed for divorce and is facing the difficult task of determining how much their business is worth. Although located primarily on the East Coast, their story can offer tips for couples throughout the country, including those in Kansas going through high net-worth divorces.

Background on the typhoon couple

According to a recent article in The New York Times, Elizabeth and Kent Swig are known on both the East and West coasts as real estate tycoons. Kent Swig began his real estate career in San Francisco, California. His family began the business, but he had established a successful reputation on his own. Elizabeth Macklowe is the daughter of Harry B. Macklowe, a powerful New York property developer.

Like many marriages throughout the U.S., the couple faced hardships during the economic downturn. Although the couple’s properties were worth well over $3 billion prior to the housing market crash, their value decreased after the crash. This fueled marital discord and ultimately played a key role in the couple’s split.

What couples in Kansas can learn

Many couples in Kansas can relate to the difficulties faced by the Swigs. In addition to determining how property is distributed, couples in these situations may also have to place a value on a business, such as a real estate or property development company.

Valuations can be done in a number of ways. An asset valuation, according to Forbes, may be the most concrete. In an asset valuation dollar values are placed on all the company’s assets. This includes tangible property like office space, furniture and computers as well as intangible things like clients, trademarks and sweat equity. Valuations can also be done based on the market approach. This approach attempts to take into consideration the company’s earning potential and foreseeable growth.

In these types of splits, it is important for both the business owner and the spouse to have legal representation. An experienced high net-worth divorce attorney will help to better ensure your legal rights are protected and can increase your odds of receiving a fair divorce settlement.