Over the last two decades, couples have found themselves growing accustomed to living a significant portion of their lives online. From social media pages to online shopper rewards, a couple often devotes time, money and effort to building their online presence. When divorce becomes a reality, however, it might be difficult to separate the ownership of these properties.
Asset and debt division can quickly become a sticking point in any divorce. Whether the couple is separating amicably or contentiously, negotiations over who gets what can often turn into heated, emotional debates. In recent years, the prospect of dividing digital assets has become cumbersome for many couples.
Digital assets can include:
- Webpages: This often constitutes the largest single portion of a couple’s online presence. Through the marriage, they often worked together to build blogs or social networking sites. Additionally, the couple might run a YouTube page to share videos with friends and family or an Instagram page to share vacation photos. These shared assets can be challenging to divide in a divorce.
- Entertainment collections: With more and more digital assets and downloadable entertainment, couples often build vast collections of books, movies, music and video games that are stored online. With divorce on the horizon, however, the couple must value and divide these assets.
- Online marketplace: Similar to a traditional brick-and-mortar business, the couple might have to divide a digital storefront in divorce. From a carefully curated eBay page to a website devoted to selling used items or custom products, the couple can decide to sell the business, continue running it together or one spouse buys out the other.
- Online currency: Whether this means cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or online shopper rewards such as bonus airline miles, the couple must carefully examine their online finances and work toward a compromise in division.
The divorcing couple must work through numerous negotiations centered on property division, debt responsibility, parenting time and support. Unfortunately, the presence of digital assets in their shared lives often means an additional layer of complexity to a tumultuous time.