When you think about property division in a divorce, most people think about real estate, bank accounts, cars, and personal property. However, if one or both spouses travel frequently, especially internationally, there may be hundreds of thousands of frequent flyer miles at stake, which can equate to a great deal of first-class air travel that has quite a bit of value. As a result, frequent flyer miles can actually be a marital asset that the parties must divide in a Georgia divorce proceeding.
The first step to assessing the value of and dividing frequent flyer miles is to look at the terms and conditions of the particular rewards program. For instance, in some cases, you may be able to simply have the airline divide the miles equally and place them into two separate frequent flyer accounts. However, some rewards programs may explicitly state that the points are not transferable to a person’s spouse as part of a divorce decree. In that case, you will have to place a monetary value on the frequent flyer miles and use it to negotiate some other asset of similar value in your divorce settlement.
Although some rewards programs provide a cash value equivalent for the points that you have accrued, other programs do not. In order to come up with a value, then, you may have to pretend that you are converting the points into actual flights and then estimate the cash value of those flights. Keep in mind that the value of the flight may vary according to the time of day, the date, and the destination, so you should do your research in order to come up with your best estimate of the cash value of the frequent flyer miles.
An Atlanta divorce lawyer at Shaw Law Firm LLC can help advise you about the equitable division of marital property, which may include frequent flyer miles. Contact us or call today to learn how Shaw Law can work with you to achieve the best outcome possible for you and your children.
Scott Shaw is founder and principle of Shaw Law Firm LLC, founded in 1995 and dedicated solely to divorce, family law and child custody matters that must be addressed and decided in the state of Georgia. Shaw Law Firm serves the greater Metro Atlanta area, particularly the counties of Fulton, Gwinnett, Cobb, Cherokee, Forsyth, Paulding, Henry, Fayette, Coweta, Newton, Walton, Bartow and Douglas. Schedule a consultation today at 770-594-8309.