Many people have a passion for art. Even if individuals do not create art themselves, they may enjoy collecting pieces and maintaining art collections. You may have enjoyed creating a collection yourself and continued your hobby even after you got married. In fact, your spouse may also have a passion for art that could have attracted you to him or her in the first place.
Now that you are getting divorced, you may worry about what will happen to the many pieces that you spent your time, effort and money on finding and purchasing. Unfortunately, property division could result in your soon-to-be ex-spouse obtaining at least some of the artwork or an equitable amount of other assets.
What is the art worth?
The value of the artwork will play a major role in how it is divided during your divorce. When it comes to valuing art, it is important to have a professional eye give your collection a once-over. An art appraiser can use his or her skills to review your collection and the individual pieces themselves and determine an approximate value.
When it comes to going over your collection, you may want to create an inventory that lists all of the pieces. This inventory should include any pieces you have on display at home, in storage, loaned out to museums or other institutions, or even ones you may have sold. The sold items are important because the proceeds you obtained could play a role in property division.
Is all your artwork at risk?
If you started your art collection before you got married, you do not have to worry about losing your entire collection. Any pieces you obtained before you tied the knot and any that you may have already obtained after the separation do not count as marital property. As a result, they are not subject to property division proceedings.
Dividing marital property can involve a considerable amount of negotiation. Because you may have a great deal of attachment to the art you have collected, you undoubtedly want to make sure that your collection remains as protected as possible. You may want to discuss your possible legal options for negotiating the ownership of certain pieces and ways to utilize property division proceedings to your advantage with a North Carolina attorney. Looking at your situation realistically may give you the best chance of a favorable outcome.