Automobiles Are Involved With Most Divorces
Since the need for automobiles is deeply ingrained in our culture, and since automobiles not only provide necessary private transportation but impart status as well, your divorce attorney is aware that most divorces will require dealing with the valuation of automobiles.
Because a huge automobile market exists in this state, and the variables that affect automobile value are finite, determining an automobile’s value is usually easier than determining the value of larger assets such as businesses or houses.
Process of Valuation
Your attorney can advise you of a structure to follow when valuing an automobile. The first level of that structure is by agreement; both parties seek to come to agreement on the automobile’s value, even though either or both parties may submit uninformed estimates.
Your attorney may advise you to use one or more automobile valuation services, such as the Kelly Blue Book or the National Automobile Dealers Association Guide. Both parties should obtain values, which can then be averaged, or they can simply agree on a value to be used in the summary process. If the condition of the vehicle causes valuation problems, a body repair shop or individual mechanic can be approached for an estimate of what it would cost to bring the vehicle up to fair or reasonable condition. The estimates will be subtracted from the agreed value before it is entered into the marital estate.
(Continued in Part 2)
If you are contemplating or going through a divorce and would like to discuss your situation with a competent and knowledgeable divorce lawyer, please call Zonder Family Law at 818-309-7059.