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Options for addressing airline miles during a divorce

On Behalf of | Oct 4, 2021 | Family Law

Traveling by air nowadays can be downright brutal. Still, if you can manage with narrow seats, angry passengers and other struggles, you may earn some airline miles for your trip. If you accumulate enough, you may be eligible for travel perks and other benefits.

The airline miles you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse have accrued during your marriage are probably part of the marital estate. In Virginia, divorcing spouses typically divide marital assets equitably. Because of the nature of airline miles, though, dividing them can be challenging.

The value of your accrued airline miles

Before thinking about the future of your airline miles, you must know how much they are worth. Regrettably, airline miles are notoriously difficult to value. For purposes of divorce planning, you may want to assume your miles are worth about 1.3 cents each, although the actual value of your miles may be drastically different.

The option of keeping your airline miles

Perhaps the easiest way to deal with airline miles during a divorce is to have each spouse keep the miles he or she has accumulated. If you go this route, you or your spouse may have to give up other assets to reach a fair settlement.

The possibility of dividing your airline miles

You may be able to add your and your spouse’s airline miles together and divide them into two roughly equal parts. Your ability to do so, of course, depends on the rules of your airline’s rewards program. If your airline prohibits transferring miles, you may have to negotiate a usage agreement.

If you are a frequent flier, your airline miles may be quite valuable. Ultimately, by including your miles in your divorce negotiations, you can be certain you receive a fair share of the marital estate.