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Couples Prepare For Marital Property Division

Couples Prepare For Marital Property Division

Family Law

If you’re thinking about divorcing your spouse, you have probably given some thought to how challenging it would be to divide your property. Transitioning one shared household into two fully operational households is never easy. Thankfully, as a divorce lawyer explains, here are some proactive planning tips that you can do that will go a long way towards making this process easier.

What Do You Need? What Do You Want?
One of the best things you can do when preparing to divide your marital property is to consult with a law firm, as the Law Office of Daniel E. Stuart, P.A. recommends, to make a list of all of your marital assets. From real estate to sentimental property, financial accounts to intellectual property rights, you’ll want to document everything that will need to be divided between you and your spouse once your divorce is complete. When possible, note the value of each asset as you list it.

Now, look over your list. Is there anything on that list that you’d be willing to fight over in court? Anything that you’d be willing to give up without a thought? Or is everything on your list “fair game” when it comes to reaching the most equitable divorce settlement possible under the circumstances? Is there anything that you’d really like to have but aren’t willing to go to court over when push comes to shove?

Knowing your answers to these questions and communicating them to your attorney will help you and your lawyer to develop a property division strategy that meets the needs of the moment. If you and your spouse can agree to the terms of your property settlement out of court, the fate of your property will never rest in a judge’s hands. However, if you have fundamental differences that cannot be bridged, a judge will be called upon to intervene.

When to Fight
Generally speaking, coming to an agreement in re: marital property is ideal because doing so will save you and your spouse the costs and stresses of going to court. However, there are times when taking an argument to court is worth the investment of your time and money, as well as the risk that a judge may side with your spouse. Only you can know whether any particular asset or approach to property division is worth fighting for. If you are unsure of whether taking a contentious approach is worth cost and risk, ask your lawyer for their objective opinion.

A Word About Spousal Support
Spousal support, sometimes still referred to as alimony, is a type of compensation paid from one spouse to the other. Oftentimes, spousal support is ordered when there is an imbalance of earning potential between divorcing spouses. However, this kind of support can also be used to “balance out” an otherwise uneven property division scheme. Say that your spouse really wants to keep your marital home and the value of a treasured collection. They may opt to pay you spousal support to cover the value of your marital property that you’d otherwise lose out on by giving up your share of the house.

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