When it comes to divorce, there is no such thing as a free Hermes bag!!!!
For the better off amongst us, it’s not uncommon in a marriage, to build up a collection of luxury items. The designer handbag is right amongst them. Hermes, Chanel and Birkin are all well-known luxury labels that hold if not increase their value over time and this makes them rich pickings in divorce proceedings.
Any item within the marriage that is worth more than £500 has to be disclosed as part of the divorce process and that includes your designer handbags. If your estimate of the value of the bag collection (or any other luxury item for that matter) is not accepted by your hitherto other half, you are looking at an independent valuation of the collection by a specialist at joint expense.
It’s not a given within divorce proceedings that you get to keep your handbags. Unless you can persuade a Judge that the collection was a gift that doesn’t have to be sold to meet your respective financial needs, the value of the collection will form part of the marital asset pool and is capable of division. If the collection was yours before you met and then married your partner, there is scope to argue that the collection should not form part of the marital pool of assets but should be treated differently to assets falling into the marriage.
Where do I stand if my bags have disappeared, one might ask?
Some wives are so desperate to keep their treasured collection that the bags just disappear from the very shelves built to display them. “My bags have been stolen” cries the wife before the learned Judge without any sign of a break in or a call to the police. Even items that have disappeared can have their value taken into account and the value attributed to the wife or husband who proclaims the collection has vanished into thin air!! Luxury items are, more often than not, individually valued for insurance purposes which is evidence in itself of what these items are worth.
For the wife who maintains she has never received a Birkin in her entire life, watch out for the production in evidence of dated photographs by the husband of the said wife with the said bag draped over her arm.
Luxury items are meant to be enjoyed and displayed which makes hiding them all the more difficult.