Essex County Division of Assets Lawyer
If you are facing a divorce, you may be wondering how to divide marital assets fairly. There are several steps involved in the division of assets process, as well as many factors that can affect the division of marital property.
Advice from a dedicated divorce attorney may help you understand your rights to marital property. Once retained, an Essex County division of assets lawyer may be able to help ensure you receive a fair portion of marital property.
Steps in the Division Process
First, the court must determine what property is subject to distribution in the divorce. The court only divides marital property in a divorce. Property owned prior to the marriage or money received from an inheritance may not be considered marital.
Next, the value of any marital property must be determined, so the court can determine what property each spouse should receive. Each step of this process can impact how much money or property a person receives in a divorce, and experienced legal counsel could make sure that a person is treated fairly during each step.
Equitable Division of Assets
When a couple divorces, marital property is split based on the principles of equitable division. However, equitable does not necessarily mean equal. There is no presumption that each spouse will receive half of any marital property in Essex County, as New Jersey does not have community property laws.
The court usually considers several factors when determining an equitable distribution of property. Divorcing spouses may not agree on how property should be divided, but an Essex County property division attorney could fight for an individual party’s property rights.
Factors Considered in Equitable Distribution
New Jersey Revised Statutes §2A:34-23.1 lists several factors that a court must consider when making an equitable distribution of property. Some examples of these factors include:
- Duration of the marriage
- The health of each party
- Income and earning capacity of each party
- Contribution by each party to the training or education of the other
- Contributions of a homemaker
- Tax consequences of a property distribution
- Needs a spouse who has physical custody of a child
- The extent to which a spouse deferred their own career goals
However, the law states that the court may consider any other factors it deems relevant. Applying these factors, or even determining which factors are relevant, can be complicated and may lead to different outcomes depending on the situation.
Marital Fault and Division of Assets
Usually, marital fault such as adultery will not be considered by a court when dividing marital property. However, there are some limited exceptions when one spouse has engaged in especially wasteful or criminal behavior. A division of property lawyer may be able to make sure this law is applied correctly to a particular case in Essex County.
Dividing Different Types of Assets
Nearly any type of marital property may be divided during a dissolution of marriage. Some property, such as cash in a bank account or household goods, can be distributed easily with each spouse taking the property granted to them.
Conversely, real estate, vehicles, and debts can be more complicated to distribute since each spouse cannot just take a part of the property. Loans on a property can complicate this further.
Some assets, like pensions and retirement accounts, can require a special court order to divide. A qualified legal representative could help clarify how each type of asset may be distributed.
Get Help from an Essex County Division of Assets Attorney
Dividing assets can be a complicated but essential part of your divorce, as this division can permanently affect your finances and well-being. Call today and find out how an Essex County division of assets lawyer could work to protect your property rights.