Louis Charles Shapiro, P.A.
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Should a divorcing couple hire two appraisers?

Have you considered hiring your own appraiser to value and divide property in a divorce? In some divorce cases, the parties and their attorneys agree upon a join appraiser and split the cost equally.

However, it might seem like a good idea if you do not completely trust your soon-to-be ex-spouse. It is important to understand the possible legal and financial impact this decision could have on your case.

How could two appraisers benefit you?

If you do not believe your spouse will hire a truly neutral or well-trained appraiser, you can hire your own appraiser. This could help a judge see a different perspective or cast doubt in other areas of your case against your spouse.

Appraisers give their professional opinion about the fair market value of a piece of property or item. Two people could have significantly different opinions. If these differ by 25, 30 percent or more it could make a considerable impact on your finances.

If two appraisers have wildly different opinions, the judge will have to make a difficult decision. It is, of course, possible that the judge could split the difference between the two opinions.

How could two appraisers cost you?

Unfortunately, two appraisers may mean double the time and double the expense. You will have to pay them not only for their services, but also for their court appearance, if your case goes to trial.

For art or valuable collectibles, an appraiser might need additional help from another expert. If one spouse hires an appraiser without access to such an expert, this could bring into question the validity of their opinion.

If you think the value of your property would be worth the cost of an additional appraiser, you should explore your legal options. It might not be the best decision for everyone, but it could make a world of difference.

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