How To Divide Marital Property During A Divorce
When marrying your spouse, the sole purpose is to build a life with someone, sharing memories, love, and on a less sentimental note, a ton of stuff. If you have made the decision to divorce, the process of separating isn’t as straightforward as you might think. There are lots of things involved such as dividing your property.
The assets each of you have accumulated throughout your marriage need to be accounted for and split fairly, so if you’re struggling on where to start, here are some useful tips that can help.
Find A Reputable Divorce Lawyer
Your first port of call before sorting out your marital property is by finding a reputable and reliable divorce attorney in your area. Finding a divorce lawyer who has excellent communication skills is vital, especially as the process can be lengthy and tiresome. When going through a divorce case, you may not be happy with the final result of your property division, so when appealing property division outcomes, having a reputable divorce lawyer by your side is important.
Keep Things Civil
Although it’s easier said than done, the whole process of going through a divorce will be much easier if you and your spouse are able to reach a settlement agreement together, rather than spending a huge amount of time and money in a family law court. If you can split amicably and communicate well with one another, this will be helpful when dividing your marital property.
Be Open And Honest
For the divorce process to go as smoothly as possible, it’s important that you’re open and upfront when identifying what you and your spouse have accumulated during your marriage. Any assets that you owned before getting married and anything you have inherited during your marriage will not be regarded as marital property. If you have any cash stashed away in a private bank account, make sure not to hide it. Divorce lawyers are experts at identifying assets that are hidden from sight.
Understand Community Vs. Separate property
Before you start the task of itemizing everything you own, it’s vital that you understand how the legal system labels your personal assets. Property purchased during a marriage is divided into two classifications, which are community (marital) and separate property. Community property is one that was earned, acquired, or obtained during your marriage, while separate property is one that you and your spouse individually own and that was never shared before marriage.
Know Your State’s Property Ownership System
If you need to go to court for your divorce, it’s vital that you take note of your state’s property ownership system, which will fall into two systems (community property and common law). These two systems will give you a clearer idea of what to expect in regard to how your judge may split your marital assets. A property that is owned by one spouse alone falls under the common law umbrella, while a community property is one that has been acquired during the marriage and is jointly owned by you and your spouse.
While it may seem like a tedious task, dividing your marital property fairly is crucial. To make the process as pain-free and seamless as possible, all the tips listed above can be a huge help.