It goes without saying that to be able to divorce, a couple must first be married. However, whether a couple actually married is not always a simple answer--especially when a marital estate of about $1.3 billion hangs in the balance. In a pending British divorce case, billionaire real estate investment maven Asif Aziz claims he never legally married Tagilde Aziz. Alternatively, Ms. Aziz claims the parties were married during at least two wedding ceremonies in 1997 and 2000, and as the mother of Mr. Aziz’s four children, he “presented to the world” they were married.
If the British Court holds no valid marriage existed, there is no marriage to be dissolved, and Ms. Aziz’s claim for roughly 50% of an estate of more than a billion dollars likely fails. North Carolina has a similar system for dividing marital assets and debts, called Equitable Distribution. Under a claim for Equitable Distribution, the Court divides equitably, but not always equally, generally all of the assets and debts acquired between a couple’s date of marriage and date of separation. Because of these important dates, judges are tasked with determining a date of marriage and date of separation. Similar to the case in Great Britain, if one party claims a marriage never existed, the Court would have to hear evidence on that issue and determine whether a valid marriage did, in fact, occur. Under North Carolina law, if the Court finds no marriage existed, neither party is entitled Equitable Distribution.
Contact Our Charlotte Family Law Attorneys Today
If you have questions about the process of Equitable Distribution, there is no time to waste in enlisting in the help of a Charlotte family lawyer you can trust, such as ours at Miller Bowles Cushing. Our trusted legal team will offer you the support, guidance, and counsel you need during this challenging time. Allow us to be your allies until you start the next chapter of your life.
Interested in scheduling an initial consultation? Contact our office at 704-810-1400 today.