Valuing Unusual Properties During a Divorce

Valuing Unusual Properties During a DivorceDetermining the value of antiques and collectibles during a divorce can be trickier than with other marital properties. You cannot afford to overlook them as they may be some of the most valuable properties of your marriage. It will be too late to receive compensation if you learn that a marital property you gave away with little consideration is worth thousands of dollars. Your former spouse may have known of the item’s true value, taking advantage of your ignorance to receive an unequal share of your marital properties. That is why it is important to use a professional appraiser to give you an accurate value of your marital properties.

Identifying Properties

Marital property in a divorce includes any items that were purchased during your marriage or were maintained with marital money. Your spouse may have been the one to purchase and use the items, but your shared financial resources give you a right to ownership or equal compensation. There are a variety of antiques and collectibles you may possess, including:

  • Art;
  • Jewelry;
  • Old furniture;
  • Relics;
  • Classic vehicles; and
  • Items associated with a hobby.

Do not assume that an item is not valuable because you do not understand or appreciate it. You may be surprised at what some people would be willing to pay for a collector’s item.

Getting an Appraisal

You should always hire your own appraiser, independent from the one your spouse is using. Many professionals are well versed in appraising the value of antiques and collectibles. With more unusual items, you may need an appraiser who specializes in that type of item. The appraiser will judge the value of an item by:

  • Verifying its authenticity;
  • Evaluating its condition; and
  • Estimating how much money the item could be sold for, based on the sale of similar items.

You cannot assume that what you initially paid for the item is even close to its actual value. Some items may have been misidentified or undervalued when you bought them. Items can also appreciate or depreciate in value over time, based on their physical condition and demand for the items.

Dividing Valuable Assets

You will need to negotiate ownership of an antique or collectible if both you and your spouse got equal joy and use out of them. If the item is of greater emotional value to your spouse, you can exchange that property for another property you value or monetary compensation. A Kane County divorce attorney at Goostree Law Group will work with a professional appraiser to accurately value your marital properties. To schedule a free consultation, call 630-584-4800.


Goostree Law Group

Goostree Law Group

 555 S. Randall Road, Suite 200
St. Charles, IL 60174


 1770 Park Street, Suite 205
Naperville IL 60563


 400 S. County Farm Road, Suite 300
Wheaton, IL 60187


Our Illinois divorce attorneys represent clients in Kane County, DuPage County, Kendall County and DeKalb County, including Geneva, Batavia, St.Charles, Wayne, Wasco, Elburn, Virgil, Lily Lake, Aurora, North Aurora, Elgin, South Elgin, Bartlett, Crystal Lake, Gilberts, Millcreek, Maple Park, Kaneville, LaFox, Yorkville, Oswego, Plano, Sugar Grove, Big Rock, Bristol, Newark, DeKalb, Sycamore, Naperville, Wheaton, West Chicago, Winfield, Warrenville, Downers Grove, Lombard, Oak Brook, Streamwood, Hoffman Estates, Barrington, South Barrington, Lake Barrington, Schaumburg, Big Grove, Boulder Hill, Bristol, Joliet, Kendall, Lisbon, Minooka, Montgomery, Plainfield, Sandwich, Yorkville and many other cities.

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