October 6th, 2010A Property Division Attorney Can Work Wonders For You
When people are married, they rarely think about how the property that is accumulated during the marriage will eventually be split up, but in at least half of all marriages, that property will be split up eventually. From the real estate you have, to your investments, your retirement accounts, your savings and investments accounts, jewelry, and even money that was won or inherited will have to be dealt with when it is time for a divorce. Although it mays seem extremely cut and dry as to what the laws are regarding property division, in most states it is terribly complicated and you will need a property division attorney to help you figure it all out.
Property division law varies from state to state, and although there are some general rules that govern the division of property, you will find that there are always exceptions. First of all, both parties usually have the right to everything that they came into a marriage with. When you are married young, this may be nothing. But, remember that includes liabilities as well as assets. So, although you may not have entered into the marriage with any assets, you may have a car loan, credit card debt, or even a school loan that you will have to settle on your own after the marriage.
In most states, all property that is obtained after the marriage is divided equitably, regardless of the salaries that each person brought in. some states require that the property be split equally, which is slightly different and may in fact require the selling of homes in order to make that happen. But, a property division attorney will be able to tell you if that is so in your state.
First of all, the property that you came into the marriage with is usually yours when you leave the marriage. Unfortunately, it is not always that cut and dry. There are some instances, especially when there is a growth in the value of the property, such as in real estate, that the property will have to be sold in order to be divided. A property division attorney can give you options if that is the case.
When you first meet with a property division attorney, you should have a list of all property that you and your spouse own, including but not limited to real estate, bank and brokerage accounts, retirement accounts, vehicles, large ticket household and electronic items, collections, or any other items of considerable value. Your spouse will be providing a similar list which will be used with yours to create a master list of property that needs to be divided.
Although you may be the wage earner in the marriage, don’t fool yourself into thinking that you should walk away with more than the non-wage earner. Laws have changed considerably over the past few years, and depending on the state you live in, you may walk away with only half. The real key is to make sure that you have a full listing of all property, with both their initial values (if they were accrued prior to the marriage), and their present day values. This will help your property division attorney to divide up the property, and give you suggestions on what you should do to handle the real estate that was purchased during the marriage.