Local news for New York reported on the divorce of a couple in Manhattan who are the heirs of the Bic pen fortune.
Wealthy couple battles over valuable artwork during their separation
The initial paperwork was filed in the Manhattan Supreme Court by the woman who is the wife of the former CEO of the company and son of Bic’s founder. There was speculation that the couple had a falling out after an argument over an art collection that includes valuable works from Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso, and approximately 30 other pieces from some of the most well known artists of the last two centuries. A previous lawsuit filed in Delaware court detailed the ownership dispute.
The 73 year old male heir said that his wife was illegally holding onto some of the works in the collection, even though a family trust set up in the early 1990s had already clearly outlined what was to be done with the collection. The filings say that she is not a beneficiary, was not mentioned anywhere in the trust document, and has no rights to anything in the collection.
The couple claims that they have been living apart since 2017 even though they waited until 2020 to formally file to dissolve the marriage.
There have been informal requests by the husband to ask for the art to be returned, but his wife’s lawyers claim that she will only give the pieces back if instructed to do so through the terms of their final divorce agreement. While the case is still pending, there have been requests for a judge to issue an order that would formally declare the art to be property of the trust, which would become an equitable remedy that requires the return of all of the outstanding pieces.
Dealing with property distribution during a divorce
Property disputes are a common problem during divorces. Many couples will contest ownership of various pieces of property and other valuable items. As this news story shows, when a couple has a high net worth with lots of assets and property, these disputes tend to last longer and become more elaborate. It is also difficult to plan for property distribution hearings, as judges tend to have broad latitude to make any decision related to property that they feel is equitable. This means that a judge can essentially favor one spouse over the other because they claim it is fair to do so based on their circumstances.
Get assistance from a licensed professional in your city
There are family law attorneys in Brooklyn who regularly assist clients with divorces, child custody, alimony, domestic violence, and related family law problems. To learn more about this process and speak with a lawyer today, contact:
32 Court Street, Suite 404, Brooklyn, NY, 11201