Identifying Marital Property Rights

Many times clients come to us just to find out what their “rights” are if they get a divorce. The answer can never be the same because each marriage situation turns on its own unique facts for the two individuals within the marriage. The general principles that must be addressed in all divorces are 1.) property issues 2.) spousal support/maintenance 3.) child custody, support and parenting time and 4.) debt division and resolution.

In this article, we will look at property issues. The Court wants to know, and must know, what the classification of the owned property. For example, is it real property (this would be real estate) or personal property (this is everything else)? Property owned is either non-marital (property owned before the marriage or individually inherited or gifted to the spouse) or marital (all property acquired during the term of the marriage) or mixed (i.e., a cashed in 401(k) of one spouse used to improve the other spouses pre-owned house with pool or porch).

So, this can be a complicated endeavor to classify, value and document the source of origin for owned property. To help alleviate the attorney costs of doing this, a client who is prepared with a complete and itemized accounting of their property can reduce attorney billable hours in recreating that which most clients should already know.

Let us guide you through the legal process of your divorce. We can help you!