As we witness the rise of the digital era, cryptocurrency continues to grow in popularity. As such, it is progressively becoming a critical asset to consider in divorce proceedings. This article provides insight into how cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others are treated in divorce cases under Missouri and U.S. law.
Cryptocurrency as Marital Property
In Missouri, as in many U.S. states, cryptocurrencies are generally treated as marital property. Therefore, they are subject to division in a divorce. However, the anonymous and highly volatile nature of these digital assets brings unique challenges to the divorce process.
Identifying and Valuing Cryptocurrency in Divorce
Identification of cryptocurrency assets is the first hurdle in divorce proceedings. Given the private nature of these assets, it is not uncommon for one party to hide their crypto holdings from the other. Here, professional expertise may be necessary to trace and identify cryptocurrency assets.
The valuation of cryptocurrency in divorce is another complex task due to its volatile nature. Courts have used different methods to value cryptocurrency assets, from valuation at the time of trial to using the historical average value.
Division of Cryptocurrency in Divorce
Once the cryptocurrency assets are identified and valued, the court needs to decide on their division. Missouri is an equitable distribution state, meaning the court divides marital property in a way it deems fair, but not necessarily equal.
Cryptocurrencies can be divided in several ways. They can be sold and the proceeds divided, or one party can be awarded the cryptocurrency and the other party awarded other marital assets of equivalent value. The exact method will depend on the specifics of the case and the court's discretion.
Legal Assistance is Crucial
Given the complexities surrounding cryptocurrency in divorce, seeking the help of an attorney experienced in both family law and cryptocurrency is crucial. They can guide you through the legal maze, ensuring a fair division of all marital assets, including cryptocurrency.
As cryptocurrencies become increasingly mainstream, their impact on divorce proceedings cannot be ignored. Understanding the legal framework governing the treatment of cryptocurrency in divorce within Missouri and across the U.S. can significantly impact the outcome of a divorce case.