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Hidden Taxes in Divorce

When the CEO of Continental Resources, Harold Hamm, divorced from his wife, Forbes published an article postulating what possible tax consequences could affect Mr. Hamm and the former Mrs. Hamm in the future. The settlement ordered Hamm, estimated to be worth $14 billion, to pay his former wife $995.5 million. Even to Mr. Hamm, that is a lot of money. Forbes asked the obvious question: with this kind of hefty transaction, the tax man must surely get his share, right? Not quite. According to law, transfers of property between spouses during a divorce are virtually tax free. Good news for the Hamms. However, as the Forbes article theorized, there are often unseen and unsavory tax burdens later on. When undertaking a matrimonial case, it is important for attorneys to be aware of these delayed tax consequences.

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