Judy A. Oxford, Attorney at Law
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Celebrity custody settlement presages complex asset division

Kelsey and Camille Grammer's custody settlement gives a portrayal of the complexity of property division in high asset divorces from Hollywood to Tennessee. So far, the couple has announced their split and the intention to have a joint physical custody arrangement for their two children. Apparently the actor and his socialite ex-wife have not yet reached a financial settlement, but that may be forthcoming.

Almost immediately after the couple's split was completed, Kelsey Grammer married a woman who is 27 years younger. The new couple is now pregnant and expecting to have twins. Amid the complexities of the divorce settlement and the immediate remarriage are the difficult decisions of asset division. Asset division is different depending on the state.

For instance, California is a community property state so each spouse in a marriage after a divorce would be entitled to 50 percent of all of the household income if there were no prenuptial agreement. Most states consider a number of factors in dividing marital assets at the time of divorce.

Tennessee courts consider a number of factors in asset division, including but not limited to each party's contribution to the marriage, duration, value of separate property, estate of each person at the time of the marriage, tax ramifications, earning capacity of the individuals and other tangible and intangible contributions.

Because of the number of factors in asset division and the complexity of defining each one, it's particularly important for a spouse to contact an experienced legal counsel that is familiar with Tennessee law and the outcome of its family court cases.

Source: Huffington Post, "Kelsey Grammer, Camille Grammer custody settlement reached: report," Brian Haas, Feb. 28, 2012

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