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Matrimonial Law & Wealth Preservation

Hodgson Russ provides high-net-worth and other individuals with sophisticated solutions and legal advice related to complex wealth preservation and wealth transfer issues that arise in association with changes in family relationships, including marriage, cohabitation and co-parenting arrangements, separation, and divorce. We have extensive experience counseling traditional and same-sex couples.

To obtain the best possible results for our clients, our matrimonial law and wealth preservation attorneys collaborate internally with attorneys across a range of disciplines, including estates and trusts; local, state, federal, and international tax; real estate; cross-border law; and bankruptcy. Externally, we consult a network of trusted advisors who provide forensic valuations of businesses and assets; forensic psychological evaluations of children; and business, property, and real estate appraisals for clients, as appropriate. Our attorneys regularly appear before and are known by judges in New York’s matrimonial court system.

Most importantly, we are keenly aware of and acutely sensitive to the undue, emotionally driven stress that typically burdens our matrimonial law clients and their loved ones, and we make a point to understand the particular family dynamics and intricacies of each and every one of our matrimonial law cases. This allows us to formulate a legal plan tailored to each client’s unique situation, thereby helping both sides of a new or dissolving relationship reach a mutually acceptable settlement. No matter the case, our goal is to ease existing tensions, allay our clients’ fears, and bring closure to often divisive situations.

Marriage and Other Legal Unions

Collaborating with Hodgson Russ attorneys in a range of disciplines to assess the financial impact of a client’s first marriage or a subsequent marriage, our matrimonial law attorneys identify and consider:

  • Assets acquired prior to and during marriage
  • Real estate and business interests
  • Estate rights of children from previous relationships
  • Inheritances
  • Income and principal received from existing trusts
  • Existing child and spousal support obligations

We then prepare clients’ marital and other domestic agreements with an eye toward protecting their financial interests, including among others:

  • Prenuptial agreements (prenups)
  • Postnuptial agreements, to address unanticipated financial issues once married
  • Cohabitation agreements, for couples who choose not to legally marry
  • Custody and parenting agreements, to protect unmarried parents and their children
  • International agreements, for married or planning to marry couples of different citizenships who anticipate moving between countries

Divorce and Separation

We advise clients with regard to the legal issues associated with complex divorce cases, including:

  • Distribution of assets and liabilities
  • Division of residential and commercial properties
  • Tax consequences
  • Impact on existing business interests
  • Child and spousal support obligations
  • Child custody and visitation
  • Geographic relocation
  • Potential for mediation and negotiated settlement

Hodgson Russ also handles the preparation of separation, property settlement, custody and parenting, and collaborative law agreements in lieu of divorce litigation.