The Unresolved Issue of “Double Dipping” in Divorce

A closely held corporation owned by one spouse may be the most valuable asset in a divorce proceeding and may cause financial hardship to the business owning spouse.  Traditionally, a divorce includes dividing assets, awarding spousal support, and if joint children are involved, awarding child support.  The concept of double dipping complicates this divisional split.  Double dipping traditionally applied to the division of assets for pensions.  Double dipping, however, is now being applied in the context of businesses.  Double dipping occurs when the business is categorized as property subject to equitable distribution and again as a stream of income subject to the spousal award.

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